Actor Bruce Willis Has Frontotemporal Dementia

Actor Bruce Willis Has Frontotemporal Dementia

😒 Actor Bruce Willis Has Frontotemporal Dementia.
😒 Bruce Willis Has Dementia: His Family Announces.
😒 Bruce Willis Has Frontotemporal Dementia: Here's What It Is.

In an Instagram post, Bruce Willis' family revealed that the actor has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia (FTD). 

The diagnosis comes nearly a year after his family revealed Willis has aphasia, which is characterized by difficulty speaking. 

Here's what you need to know about this disease. 


What is FTD?

Bruce willis

FTD refers to a number of conditions involving deterioration of the cranial nerves in the frontal and temporal parts of the brain that contribute to behavior, personality, and language. His family said Willis' previous diagnosis of aphasia could be a symptom of FTD. 


There are different types of FTD. Behavior and personality are primarily affected when nerve cells essential for judgment, behavior and empathy begin to degenerate.

Estimates of how many people have FTD are inconclusive, but the Alzheimer's Association estimates that about 50,000 to 60,000 people in the United States have behavioral and language versions of the disease. 


Is FTD the same as Alzheimer's?


Although FTD involves progressive loss of nerves in the brain, it differs from Alzheimer's disease in important ways. Most people are diagnosed with FTD between the ages of 40 and 60, while those with Alzheimer's disease are usually diagnosed later in life. 

Memory loss and confusion are more common in Alzheimer's disease than  FTD, while language problems are more common in FTD. 

In FTD, patients develop abnormal deposits of one of two proteins—a form of the protein called tau and TDP-43—but not both. 

Patients with Alzheimer's disease also accumulate tau, but this is a different form than that associated with FTD.It is also generally more difficult to diagnose FTD.

"Efforts are underway to develop blood, CSF and PET  markers to diagnose FTD, but they are still in development and  we do not currently have an effective way to test for FTD like we do for Alzheimer's." do,” he says. DR Ryan.

Darby, director of the Frontotemporal Dementia Clinic at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Doctors diagnose patients based on their  symptoms and sometimes with  brain scans, which can  provide clues but aren't definitive.

In addition, says Dr.Nicole Purcell,  neurologist and senior director of clinical practice at the Alzheimer's Association, "We often do tests to rule out other types of dementia, such as Alzheimer's dementia."

About a third of FTD cases are genetic, according to the Alzheimer's Association, and there are no known risk factors for non-genetic cases, making it difficult to identify individuals at risk for developing the disease. 


Understanding which of the two proteins is abnormally accumulating is critical to developing the right treatments. Darby says that while some forms of language-related FTD contain TDP43, patients with behavioral symptoms can have excessive forms of both proteins, making it difficult to determine which protein is being targeted in the drug dosage. 


Are there treatments? 

Although many studies have been conducted to better understand FTD and its causes, there is still no cure for the neurodegenerative disease.Anxiolytics and antidepressants can reduce patients' agitation and stress, but there is no treatment yet that combats the slow breakdown of neurons in  affected areas of the brain. 

Researchers are focusing on the genetic forms of the disease  to learn more about how it works and how best to intervene with potential treatments, says Dr. Claire Clelland, assistant professor of neurology at the University of California, San Francisco.

"We believe this is the best and fastest route to clinical trials of new therapies," he said. “In genetic cases, where we know the underlying cause of the gene mutation, we will learn more about the disease  so we can  help more patients.

Research into the disease has increased in recent years, with physicians treating FTD patients at academic centers working together to identify and monitor patients, gather information, and prepare to test promising new drug treatments when they become available they occur.

"Our understanding of FTD has really improved dramatically over the last few decades," says Darby. "We have gained much of our understanding  since the 1990s when we identified the clinical syndrome, and the  most common  inherited form gene, was only discovered in 2011. Many innovations have been made recently, so many of us are optimistic that this will result in therapies Clelland shares this optimism.

"These are problems that can be fixed," he says. "My lab has already pretty much healed patient cells in the dish. We just have to figure out how to get the therapy to patients." 


which will hopefully lead to further research.

"Bruce has always believed in using his voice in the world to help others and  raise awareness of important issues, both public and private," Willis told family  in an explanation.

"Deep down, we know  that  if he could today, he would love to respond by garnering global attention and connecting with those who are also dealing with this devastating disease and how it is affecting so many people and their families... Bruce's condition, we hope the attention of the media  can focus on bringing this disease to light, which requires a lot more awareness and research."

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