Towards a better diagnosis: Dementia with Lewy Bodies and Parkinson’s disease dementia
Researchers at NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre were responsible for the differential diagnosis of Alzheimer’s.
Newcastle is recognised for excellence and critical mass in dementia research, particularly in dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Parkinson’s diseases dementia (PDD), and was awarded a Biomedical Research Unit in LBD in 2012.
Development of classification criteria for DLB and the differential diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, using innovative DATSCAN imaging has led to DLB and PDD being formally recognised in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5).
This US-based classification represents a major step towards global recognition of DLB as a distinct disorder. This will lead to significant benefit for patients through impact on the regulation of trials and engagement by industry.
More recently, experts working on research into dementia with Lewy bodies at the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre have led on an international consortium to produce new recommendations to help diagnose the disease more accurately and improve management of the complex disorder.
Ian McKeith, Professor of Old Age Psychiatry at Newcastle University led the international consortium throughout 2016/17. The new recommendations highlight the importance of detecting the disease early.