International approaches to frontotemporal dementia diagnosis: From social cognition to neuropsychology

  • Miller B
  • Diehl J
  • Freedman M
 et al. 
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Abstract

Discusses the different types of international approaches to diagnoses of frontotemporal dementia (FTD). FTD differs from Alzheimer's disease (AD) because FTD begins in the frontal and anterior temporal lobes and amygdala, not the medial temporal cortex. The functions of these complex brain regions are both cognitive and behavioral, and the most prominent deficits associated with FTD involve frontal executive functions and social behavior. Not surprisingly, attempts to improve diagnosis of FTD have oscillated between the use of neuropsychological testing and the use of social or behavioral tasks. The article cites some studies on clinical cohorts toemphasize the noncognitive behavioral disorders in FTD patients. Also, A study on social recognition suggests that different neural circuits in the temporal and frontal lobes generate cognitive and emotional empathy. Another area of research in social cognition in FTD relates to theory of mind (ToM), which refers to awareness of other people's minds and the ability to make inferences about the mental states of others.The article points out that FTD is no FTD can no longer be considered a rare disorder that is impossible to diagnose until autopsy. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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Authors

  • Bruce L. Miller

  • Janine Diehl

  • Morris Freedman

  • Andrew Kertesz

  • Mario Mendez

  • Katya Rascovsky

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