- Ossenkopele R, Pijnenburg Y, Perry DC, et al. The behavioural/dysexecutive variant of Alzheimer’s disease: clinical, neuroimaging and pathological features. Brain 2015;138: 2732 – 2749.
The recent IGW-2 criteria formally introduced the concept of atypical AD phenotype, including a “frontal” variant. This paper, based on an extensive series of pathologically verified or biomarker-defined AD cases, introduces an interesting distinction between a behavioural and a cognitive (dysexecutive) AD variant, and represents a significant contribution to the differential diagnosis with the behavioural variant of frontotemporal dementia in clinical practice.
Stefano F. Cappa, MD, Prof
2nd Department of Neurology
Ospedale San Raffaele – Vita-Salute San Raffaele University
Co-chair, EAN Scientific Panel Higher cortical functions
- Mayer G, Bitterlich M, Kuwert T, et al. Ictal SPECT in patients with rapid eye movement sleep behaviour disorder. Brain 2015: 138; 1263–1270.
The paper shows that in patients with Parkinson’s disease and rapid eye movement sleep behaviour disorder (RBD) —in contrast to wakefulness—the neural activity generating movement during episodes of RBD bypasses the basal ganglia, a mechanism that is shared by patients with idiopathic rapid eye movement sleep behaviour disorder.
Ulf Kallweit, MD
Bern University Hospital
Secretary, EAN Scientific Panel Sleep-Wake Disorders
- Kelley AS, Morrison RS. Palliative care for the seriously ill. N Eng J Med 2015; 373: 747-755.
There has been increasing discussion regarding the extension of palliative care to diseases other than cancer. This has been slowly developing, but varies for country to country and in some services there is still a restriction to the care of people with advanced cancer.
The paper by Kelley and Morrison describes the commonality between all disease groups – particularly in the symptom prevalence and the needs of patients and families as they face progressive disease.
The role of palliative care for patients with neurological disease is emphasised and there is discussion of the need for further education in the concepts and principles of palliative care for all healthcare professions and the need for more research into the role and effectiveness for all patients.
All involved in the care of neurological patients, particularly those with progressive disease such as ALS, MS and Parkinson’s disease, would gain an insight into how care could be improved and collaboration with palliative care services would enable patients, and their families, to gain in quality of life and receive improved care at the end of life.
David Oliver, MD
Consultant in Palliative Medicine
Honorary Reader, University of Kent
Wisdom Hospice, Rochester, UK
Co-chair, EAN Scientific Panel Palliative care
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