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Key Indicators of Primary Dementias and How They Fit Together

presented by Teepa Snow, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Teepa Snow receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.


Non-Financial: Teepa Snow has no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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Accreditation Check:
For therapists who provide services to people living with various forms of dementia, awareness regarding differential diagnoses in order to tailor condition management and interventions is becoming more and more vital. Current understanding is that labeling someone as simply having a syndrome of “dementia” or mislabeling a condition as Alzheimer's, when it is not, in the early stages of the condition is ineffective and inadequate for best quality care and treatment planning. This session is designed to provide a description and definition of the various forms of dementia in the earlier stages. We will revisit and discuss the five role-plays from the previous part of this course that will confirm or change the predictions of type of dementia based on the interaction and performance on the screening tools.

This is part three of a three part series covering dementias. Be sure to watch:
Part One: Differentiating Dementias: Alzheimer's, Vascular, and Lewy Body
Part Two: Differentiating Dementias: Frontal, Temporal and More

Meet Your Instructor

Teepa Snow, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA

Teepa Snow is an advocate for those living with dementia and has made it her personal mission to help families and professionals better understand how it feels to be living with such challenges and seeks to change and improve life for everyone involved. Her practice has included everything from neuro-intensive care units in tertiary hospitals…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. The Umbrella of Dementia

Appreciating that the term dementia refers to a syndrome, a collection of symptoms and not a diagnosis is an important step in better recognizing the highly variable nature of the condition and in determining how to assess each type of dementia using various screening tools. This section will review the characteristics of all dementias as well as provide the current categorization used to differentiate various forms and causes.

2. Indicators of Dementias

This section will provide key indicators of each of the five aforementioned dementias. The characteristics, symptoms, and possible other ways to differentiate between the various forms and causes of these dementias will be the focus in this chapter. Not only will we look at the person living with dementia, but we will also discuss the expected family responses or history that the person living with dementia may not be able to provide.

3. Discussion of Cases

With the five descriptions and scenarios, we will revisit each scenario and discuss possible diagnoses and interventions for best care planning and outcomes. We will correctly identify each of the dementias based on the exhibited symptoms in the five scenarios. Finally, we will review the characteristics of all dementias as well as provide the current categorization used to differentiate various forms and causes while determining what the next steps would be.

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