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What are the differences between Frontal Temporal Dementia and Alzhiemers ? Both are terminal,what is the time difference?

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Hello, I am "slowlygreiving'. As you can see I posted the comment 8 months ago. Since that time I feel I could write a book on FTD. June 23,2010 my husband died at the age of 76. He was diagnosed in August of 2009, but the doctors think he had it for at least 4 years. I had the most difficult time of my life th last 2 to 3 months of his life. In the end he suffered with Sundowners as well as the FTD. I was his only care giver , so that meant when he was up all night, I was up all night. He was not just up, but causing mischief like a 2 year old might ( only worse.) He would be on the move constantly, lifting glass table tops off of table,Pulling large area carpets around, taking pictures off walls, moving objects from one place to another, I also had to deal with him not going to the bathroom in the toilet, but finding a strange place like a waste basket. I was constantly on alert or be behind him trying to keep him from hurting himself. One night he was able to push the sliding glass door open even though it had thumb screws tightening it down. He was very strong and over 6 foot tall. He went outside and moved furniture, potted plants and yard lights. He was dressed only in his pull up disposable pants. I could go on and on but I think you are getting the picture. My weight dropped to 100 pounds ( I am 5' 4") from lack of sleep. The final day I had him home he had been spitting out his pills. He became more and more aggitated and angry. He came at me and said "I'm going to kill you" and started chasing me. I ran, he picked up a river rock and threw it at me. I knew from the look on his face I was in danger. I made it to my car and luckily had the keys in my pocket. I jumped in and took off just has he got to the car door. I drove to the nearest neighbor (not very close) and she called 911. They put him in a lock down convelescent hospital. They got him under control by putting a rub on compounded medication since he refused to swallow pills..I wasn't allowed to visit with him until he was under control.It was 4 days before I went in and tried to help feed him.He was happy to see me when I went to visit, and I spent days wheeling him out in the garden, talking and singing to him. In 19 days he went from walking to in a wheel chair to the last 4 days in bed. He had refused to eat or drink, and wasted away before my eyes. He had a Health directive that said he could not be forced, and a DNR.
I am still greiving, but not so slow now.We were married 41 years and I feel I have a hole in my heart.
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The difference I have noticed with my own parents who both have non-Alzheimer's dementia is that they recognize familiar people and will converse somewhat normally, often making it seem that they are "perfectly sharp mentally." But judgment and reasoning skills are very, very poor. In Alzheimer's, long term memory is lost, but it may be relatively intact in vascular or frontotemporal. They will seem more like themselves other than maybe disinhibition and gradually stopping activities and formerly beloved hobbies that are beyond them; my Mom now "hates" Bingo and television, for example. She will chat with visitors and always asks about my hubby and the kids, but they just told me this past week they are stopping formal therapy and do not even think she can learn to put her hearing aids on, she cannot cognitively manage the sequence of steps involved, and she does not remember how to use a cell phone any more. She probably had another small posterior circulation stroke about a month ago now, right after which she was almost blind for a couple weeks, but that has improved and she's back to complaining that my teeth are crooked. She does not seem to notice minor pimples and blemishes as much though, maybe that's a blessing. On the plus side, she could also see well enough to notice and like my short hair cut, and I overheard her tell a nurse I am a good daughter (right after I brought her some new winter clothes and a big bag of sugarfree candies.)

BTW - When my mom had some hallucinations they thought maybe Lewy body too - I think it is really a subtype of vascular or frontotemporal rather than Alzheimer's - but it turned out to be more medication side effect related.
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It might be a good idea to write more and perhaps one of the site registered experts can give you information - Carol Bradly has amazing knowledge. Behavior runs the gamut, but research has proven that with stimulation and an engaging environment people who have dementia, as opposed to Alzheimers are able to stabilize and in some case regain a bit of functionality. Regain functionality does not mean cure - but it is something. Music and dance seem to help. Depending on whether you are up to it, there is alot of information out there, but remember in the end we are all terminal - it is the quality of time not how much there is.
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Dear slowlygrieving, You can Google to help you with the definitions. My Dad has Advanced Stage Alzheimer's of the possible Lewy Bodies variety, and FIL has Multi-Infarct Vascular Dementia brought on by stroke. Even these have different manifestations for different people. Often it's an individual thing, with similar characterists identifiable as a guideline. What type are you dealing with?
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