What Is Vascular Dementia?
Vascular dementia results from decreased blood supply to parts of your brain, robbing it of oxygen and nutrients and leading to brain cell dysfunction.
Strokes or a series of strokes can cause vascular dementia, but more often the condition develops gradually. Vascular disease affects the small blood vessels feeding the brain. Eventually the brain cells stop working.
Vascular dementia can be difficult to distinguish from Alzheimer’s disease, and it has been suggested that these two conditions are related. Additionally, these two conditions often occur in combination.
However, individuals with vascular dementia often have a slightly different collection of symptoms than Alzheimer’s patients. Recall of memories is often difficult and may be slow. Thinking in general often seems slowed. And, walking often is slowed, possibly to a shuffle.
Treatment most often is focused on risk factors for vascular disease, such as blood pressure, cholesterol and smoking.
The board-certified and fellowship-trained specialists at Norton Neuroscience Institute Memory Center have the experience and expertise to precisely diagnose vascular dementia and other neurological conditions. Our providers are at the leading edge of advances in this rapidly developing field to help manage dementia symptoms and slow their progress.
More patients in Louisville and Southern Indiana trust Norton Neuroscience Institute with their neurological care than any other provider in the area. Patients find a comprehensive range of board-certified specialists who provide a diversity of viewpoints to develop a customized care plan for each patient.
Can a Stroke Cause Dementia?
Vascular dementia can occur after a stroke or series of strokes. In these cases it may be easy to connect any changes in memory and thinking to a specific stroke and to the location of damaged brain tissue.
More often, however, vascular dementia progresses over time, and it is impossible to connect symptoms to a stroke or any particular point in time.
Vascular Dementia Prognosis
Vascular dementia has no cure, and as the disease progresses, the patient eventually will need specialized care as mental and physical abilities decline.
The Norton Neuroscience Institute Resource Center can support patients and caregivers through the progression of vascular dementia, including resources to help caregivers through this time and transition from home care to specialized care when the time comes.