Dementia with Lewy bodies is a disease with a large clinical heterogeneity in which both symptoms and evolution can vary widely among patients. This clinical heterogeneity is linked to the great neuropathological variability found in autopsy. The Sant Pau Memory Unit of Hospital Sant Pau is a pioneer in the publication of the first study in which clinical subtypes are described within dementia with Lewy bodies. The study entitled Clinical subtypes in dementia with Lewy bodies based on their initial clinical presentation has recently been published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.
After five years of work and an exhaustive evaluation and review of the clinical features of this disease, we have found three clinical subtypes based on the initial symptoms: a cognitive subtype, with a predominance of cognitive symptoms over the rest of typical features and a slow evolution; a neuropsychiatric subtype, with a marked presence of visual hallucinations and a higher age of onset; and a parkinsonian subtype of rapid evolution, with a predominance of motor symptoms from the onset of the disease.
This study is also novel by the application of a data driven analysis and the use of a mathematical formula to calculate the predominance of symptoms during the onset of the disease, which avoids classification biases and results in a more objective study. This type of analysis, is gaining popularity nowadays in biomedical research.
This study is crucial in the understanding of dementia with Lewy bodies and opens the way to new investigations focused on disentangling the great heterogeneity of this disease. To disentangle this heterogeneity is also essential to continue making our way in the investigation of causes and processes of dementia with Lewy bodies, always targeting the development of much needed future treatments.
More details about the article can be found in this link: