Drug treatment in Lewy body dementia

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Abstract

The treatment of Lewy body dementia (LBD) is particularly difficult for the co-occurrence of psychiatric and parkinsonian symptoms: antipsychotic drugs can worsen parkinsonism, and antiparkinsonian drugs can precipitate delusions and hallucinations. The aim of this study was to describe treatment strategies and outcomes of 10 clinically diagnosed LBD patients. Two patients had mainly motor symptoms, L-dopa therapy was moderately successful, and psychotic symptoms did not worsen. Eight had relevant psychiatric symptoms needing neuroleptic therapy. Six of these had sufficient response to low-dose neuroleptics and 2 did not respond; parkinsonism worsened in all 8 and L-dopa therapy or treatment with an antiparkinsonian drug was started in 6. L-Dopa or antiparkinsonian drugs were given also to those 2 patients who did not receive neuroleptics. Of the 8 patients taking L-dopa or antiparkinsonian drugs, 6 had a moderate or good response with no or only mild adverse effects. Psychiatric symptoms were sensitive to trazodone or clozapine in 2 patients, without side effects. A flow chart of drug therapy in LBD is proposed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)188-197
Number of pages10
JournalDementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders
Volume8
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1997

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Keywords

  • Dementia
  • L-Dopa
  • Lewy body dementia
  • Neuroleptics
  • Parkinsonism
  • Psychosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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