Brain function, disease and dementia
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Brain function, disease and dementia

Malarvizhi Babu Sandilyan Consultant in old age psychiatry, Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Reading, England
Tom Dening Professor of dementia research, Institute of Mental Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, England

Dementia is a consequence of brain disease. This article, the second in this series on dementia, discusses normal brain function and how certain functions are localised to different areas of the brain. This is important in determining the symptoms of dementia, depending on which parts of the brain are most directly involved. The most common types of dementia – Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies and frontotemporal dementia – affect the brain in different ways and cause different changes at the microscopic level. Dementia is affected by genetics, and recent advances in molecular techniques have improved our understanding of some of the mechanisms involved, which in turns suggests possibilities for new treatments in the future.

Nursing Standard. 29, 39, 36-42. doi: 10.7748/ns.29.39.36.e9425


Peer review

All articles are subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software.

Received: 31 July 2014

Accepted: 14 November 2014