Kentucky residents should be aware that a projected 1.4 million people in the United States suffer from Lewy body dementia, or LBD. LBD is a progressive and complex brain disorder in which abnormal deposits of the alpha-synuclein protein build up in the portions of the brain that control a person’s movement, behavior and cognitive ability. Due to the similarity between its symptoms and diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, LBD is severely underdiagnosed. Many health care professionals, including physicians, have no familiarity with LBD.

It has not yet been definitely determined what causes LBD, although there is research that is being conducted to find the cause. There is a belief that there are multiple factors that contribute to the development of the disease. Environmental factors and genetics along with the processes that occur during natural aging are suspected of making individuals vulnerable to the disease.

One important indication of LBD is impaired thinking. The disease damages memory function, the ability to comprehend visual information and executive function, such as planning and the processing of information. People who suffer from LBD may find that they are not able to remain attentive or alert as they used to. LBD sufferers may also experience stiffness, difficulty with walking, slowness, tremors, hallucinations and changes in their behavior and sleep.

An attorney who practices medical malpractice law may evaluate the factors of a client’s medical case and may explain all available legal options. Depending on the circumstances of the case, physicians, other medical personnel and hospital facilities may be pursued for financial damages for negligent medical care that resulted in unnecessary treatment, injuries, a worsened medical condition, delayed treatment, permanent disability or death. Financial compensation may be pursued for the failure to properly diagnose a potentially fatal medical condition whose symptoms a client was clearly exhibiting.