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Thursday, August 04, 2011 Adelejr, Community Member, asks

Q: frontal lobe dementia is hereditary?

After not finding out until the later stage of dementia that my Nan has it, I was wondering if it is hereditary? My nan wasn't given any help until a fall and hospital staff noticed her strange behaviour. She also had a serious of mini stokes combined with the dementia this has left her not able to walk, eat or drink, she is in her own little world talking about past things and talking to people who aren't there. We no now this started at Christmas 2010 when my mother called her 'mom' and she replied why do you keep calling me that.Also before her fall she became very depressed called family and constantly throughout the night and day. It is a horrible disease which not even a animal would be left to suffer with!
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Answers (2)
Carol Bradley Bursack, Health Guide
8/ 4/11 7:34am

I'm so sorry Adelejr! You are suffering along with your Nan. Most of the time, this is not hereditary, though there is much that isn't known. Some forms of the disease have a genetic link, but many, many people don't show any genetic link but get it anyway. Nan may have "mixed dementias", meaning that she could have frontal lobe as well as vascular (you mentioned mini-strokes) dementia.

Please take care of yourself, support Nan and love her as she is. Reach out to others as your are doing now. We do understand your pain, as most of us have been through a similar situation. Also, you may want to go to www.wellspouse.org to get more support for spouses.

Blessings,

Carol

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AFA Social Services, Health Guide
8/10/11 11:31am

Frontotemporal dementia is one of the lesser known types of dementia, characterized by brain damage in the frontal and temporal lobes.  The cause of this dementia, like Alzheimer's disease, has yet to be fully determined, though in some cases, there is evidence of genetic mutations.  However, also like in Alzheimer's disease, some cases present with no family history.

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By Adelejr, Community Member— Last Modified: 08/10/11, First Published: 08/04/11