"Of all the things that I have lost, I miss my mind the most”
- Mark Twain on memory loss and dementia.

Dementia is a term that generally describes the loss of cognitive functions like thinking, understanding and memory, commonly due to the damage of brain cells often associated with aging. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) worldwide 35.6 million people suffer from Dementia and in India alone, 3.7 million people have Dementia.

We at Vimhans PrimaMed Institute of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Electrical Physiology assure you that with us dementia is a manageable condition. We bring you effective surgeries and conduct a rehabilitation program involving occupational therapy, physiotherapy, and psychological assessments to offer our patients a complete care system in warm and friendly environment.

Types of Dementia

Dementia can be classified differently depending upon their common features. The common ones include:

Cortical dementia affecting only the cortex (outer layer) of the brain
Sub cortical dementia affects the lower layer of the cortex
Primary dementia doesn’t occur from any other disease
Secondary dementia often occurs from a physical injury and disease
Progressive dementia gets worse over time and gradually interferes with more and more cognitive abilities

Progressive dementia is commonly noticed in individuals with Alzheimer's disease, vascular dementia and Lewy body dementia. Alzheimer's disease is the commonest type of progressive dementia.

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Symptoms associated with Dementia

Dementia symptoms usually include difficulty with different areas of normal brain functioning involving emotional behavior and personality, memory, language, perception and thinking & judgment (cognitive skills). Common symptoms noticed in a patient with dementia include:-

Memory loss
Difficulty with complex tasks
Difficulty communicating
Difficulty with planning and organizing
Problems with disorientation, such as getting lost
Inability to reason
Personality changes
Inappropriate behavior
Agitation
Paranoia
Hallucinations

Treatment Options for dementia

While treatments to halt or reverse the disease progression are not available for the majority of dementias, patients can benefit from treatment with available medications and cognitive training.

The treatment of dementia commonly depends on its cause. In most cases of progressive dementias, including Alzheimer's disease, no cure and no such treatment is available that slows or stops its progression. However there are some drug treatments that may improve symptoms, temporarily.

Several dementia symptoms may be cured initially through non-drug approaches, such as changing and modifying the environment of the patients, and modifying our responses and tasks. Physical therapy and occupational therapy may also help the patients to cope with the behavioral changes.

Neuropsychologists is available for cognitive training. Some kinds of dementia can be due to increased fluid formation in brain called Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus. Effective management with Shunt surgery is available for such cases.

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