With LBD: Well formed visual hallucinations often appear before thinking abilities fade.
With Parkinson's: Similar hallucinations appear well after motor symptoms but while thinking is still intact.
- At first, the person believes the care partner's explanation that the hallucinations are simple Lewy playing tricks again. Earl said, "I know the little army men aren't real but they are fascinating."
- As abstract thinking fades, Earl will begin to believe his little men are real. As with delusions, this belief cannot be changed.
Delusions: Once thinking fades, hallucinations are often combined with delusions into elaborate dramas that the person truly believes.
Best reaction: Empathetic communication (tomorrow's blog)
For more information about Lewy body disorders, read our books:
A Caregivers’ Guide to Lewy Body Dementia
Managing Cognitive Issues in Parkinson's and Lewy Body Dementia
Helen and James Whitworth are not doctors, lawyers or social workers. As informed caregivers, they share the information here for educational purposes only. It should never be used instead of a professional's advice.