Ann was diagnosed with dementia with Lewy Bodies in August 2016 but had been suffering with the initial symptoms for a couple of years prior to this. She was also told that, as her disease progressed, she would develop Parkinson's.
It has been very sad to watch our friend's physical and mental health deteriorate. She struggled to grasp the simplest of tasks and was easily upset and frustrated with herself because she could not understand. As is common with Lewy Body, she had visual hallucinations and could become quite frightened and confused at times. Unfortunately, there is no effective medication that can be given to help with these.
Ann stayed in the home that she loved in Oare for as long as possible with the help of carers and friends, until June 2017 when she went into Kimberley Care Home in Herne Bay for respite care. She got on very well in the home and decided to stay. It was the right decision for her and it is pleasing to know that she was still well enough at that time to make this decision for herself.
Over the past year, Ann's health deteriorated to the point where she was bed bound and non-communicative. She was well cared for by the staff in the care home and I am told that she was one of their favourite residents. Ann was not alone when she passed away.
Ann was a wonderful lady who was gentle, kind, generous and fun-loving. She had a full, active life and enjoyed it to the max! She went on lots of fantastic holidays and was generous enough to share some of those experiences with her friends. She was always first to help someone in need with kind words and thoughtful advice. She will be greatly missed by all of her friends. I am sure we all have fond memories of times that we spent with Ann. Please feel free to write about your memories on this page, it would be lovely to gather some stories.
Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is the second most common cause of dementia in older people, accounting for approximately 130,000 individuals in the UK and affecting the lives of their carers and families as well.
People with DLB characteristically experience dramatic swings in their level of alertness, fluctuating from clarity to confusion, often in a short period of time. Visual hallucinations are common in DLB, typically of people and animals, which are vivid. Although they may have other Parkinsonian symptoms, the tremor associated with PD is not always present. Because DLB, AD and PD share so many symptoms, diagnosis of DLB can be difficult and requires an experienced specialist e.g. in old age psychiatry or neurology. Accurate diagnosis is essential for successful treatment.
One of the main objectives of the Lewy Body Society is to fund clinical research, to help understand the causes of Lewy body dementia, and further advance the diagnosis and treatment of the disease. It has funded projects since 2007 and worked with some of the top universities in the UK.
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