Vascular Dementia

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.

Care That’s Focused on You

It’s part of Norton Neuroscience Institute’s goal to care for the whole person, not just the condition.

  • Dedicated patient navigators can help schedule follow-up appointments, coordinate prescription assistance, create customized diet plans and provide guidance on disability benefits, housing, financial and employment concerns, and more.
  • Patients can access support groups, exercise classes and other educational events to connect with others and learn how to make the most of life while managing a neurologic condition.
  • Access an on-demand video library of educational content across a variety of condition-related topics is available.
  • We want to help prevent illness. Get help quitting smoking, and learn the signs of stroke.

A Louisville Leader in Neurological Care

More patients from Louisville and Southern Indiana seek their neurology and neurosurgery care from Norton Neuroscience Institute’s nationally recognized specialists than any other providers in the area.

Your Norton Neuroscience Institute medical provider has the expertise, experience, diagnostic tools and sophisticated treatments to provide care tailored to your needs.

  • More than 130 medical, surgical and research specialists are dedicated to providing innovative care to those with brain, spine and nervous system conditions.
  • Advanced, minimally invasive neurosurgery equipment can speed your recovery and minimize pain.
  • Multidisciplinary clinics provide easy access to care in one convenient appointment for your neurologic condition, with specialists in oncology, cardiology, orthopedics and behavioral health.
  • Norton Healthcare’s four adult-service hospitals in Louisville are certified by DNV, recognizing excellence and expertise in stroke care.
    • Norton Brownsboro Hospital is recognized as a Comprehensive Stroke Center.
    • Norton Audubon Hospital and Norton Hospital are Primary Stroke Centers.
    • Norton Women’s & Children’s Hospital is an Acute Stroke Ready Hospital.
  • Norton Neuroscience Institute is at the forefront of neuroscientific research. As investigators on numerous trials, our physicians contribute to groundbreaking studies and publications in peer-reviewed journals. Also, patients may be eligible to take part in these experimental treatments.
    Learn more about current neuroscience clinical trials and studies.
  • The American Heart Association Get With the Guidelines stroke care program has recognized all four of Norton Healthcare’s adult service-hospitals in Louisville for exceeding national averages in getting patients in the door and administering lifesaving treatment to restore blood flow to the brain.
  • Norton Neuroscience Institute’s multiple sclerosis (MS) program has been designated a Center for Comprehensive MS Care by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
  • The National Association of Epilepsy Centers has recognized Norton Neuroscience Institute Comprehensive Epilepsy Center as a level 4 center, providing the highest level of medical and surgical evaluation and treatment for patients with complex epilepsy.
  • Norton Hospital’s neurosurgical intensive care unit is recognized with a silver-level Beacon Award for Excellence by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.
  • Norton Neuroscience Institute Resource Center navigators help educate patients and their families about new diagnoses, available treatments and ways to manage their disease.
  • Communicate with your provider, manage appointments, refill prescriptions, get an alert if an earlier appointment becomes available, and more anytime from a computer or mobile device with a free Norton MyChart account.

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