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Acting Out Dreams During Sleep May Signal Dementia
Date:3/21/2013

euroscientist at Mayo Clinic in Florida, said in a Mayo news release.

She said these findings could improve diagnosis and treatment of this type of dementia.

"Screening for the sleep disorder in a patient with dementia could help clinicians diagnose either dementia with Lewy bodies or Alzheimer's disease," Murray said. "It can sometimes be very difficult to tell the difference between these two dementias, especially in the early stages, but we have found that only 2 to 3 percent of patients with Alzheimer's disease have a history of this sleep disorder."

There is no cure for dementia with Lewy bodies, but there are drugs that can treat some of the symptoms.

While the study found a link between REM sleep behavior disorder and dementia, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship. The data and conclusions of the study should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has more about dementia.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Mayo Clinic, news release, March 21, 2013


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