Editor’s note: Medical Providers can register and attend the Central Washington Medical Providers Event for education on diagnosing and supporting patients living with Frontal Temporal Dementia.
Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) or frontotemporal degenerations refers to a group of disorders caused by progressive nerve cell loss in the brain’s frontal lobes (the areas behind your forehead) or its temporal lobes (the regions behind your ears).
FTD, once considered rare, is now thought to account for up to 10 to 15 percent of all dementia cases. It tends to occur earlier than Alzheimer’s, primarily between ages 35 and 75. Those who have damage to the frontal lobes will often experience changes in their behavior, whereas those who experience damage to the temporal lobe will have issues with speech and language. Due to its earlier onset and prominent behavioral and personality symptoms, it may be mistaken for a primary psychiatric disorder.