Atlanta— On November 3, 2015, Susan Williams, Robin Williams’ widow, spoke on Good Morning America (GMA) and in other media, about it taking the past year for her to learn that Robin was suffering from Lewy body dementia (LBD), which she believes led to his demise. Susan Williams explained that the original Parkinson’s diagnosis did not cover all of his symptoms, and he was unaware of the LBD diagnosis when he died.
LBD's Overlapping FeaturesDr. Dan Kaufer, a member of the Scientific Advisory Council for the Lewy Body Dementia Association (LBDA), the only national health organization dedicated to LBD, explained that “LBD is commonly mistaken for Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease, or a psychiatric disorder because of overlapping features.”
Expanding LBD Awareness“The LBDA has diligently shared this and other news about LBD for years to educate the healthcare community and families, but awareness has been slow in coming,” said Michael Koehler, president of LBDA’s Board of Directors.
“Because Robin Williams was such a universally beloved actor and comedian, Susan Williams’ story has a significant impact in expanding awareness.”
Website CrashThis was clear to the Association shortly after the GMA interview aired, when calls came into the Atlanta offices of the LBDA. Interview requests included those from
- Time Magazine
- The Guardian
- The New York Times
LBDA in ActionThe website www.lbda.org provides detailed information about:
- differentiating LBD, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s symptoms
- online and in-person support groups
- many other resources.
A Seat at the Table“LBD, which affects 1.4 million people and is the second most progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s disease, finally has a seat at the table,” said Taylor. “We’re gaining traction,” added Koehler, “which can only serve to help more people get the correct early diagnoses and support.”
MORE INFORMATION: About the Lewy Body Dementia Association
The Lewy Body Dementia Association (LBDA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness of Lewy body dementias (LBD), promoting scientific advances, and supporting people with LBD, their families and caregivers. LBD, a complex disease that can present with a range of physical, cognitive and behavioral symptoms, is a “family disease.” It dramatically affects not only the person diagnosed but also the primary caregiver. The only national health organization dedicated to LBD, LBDA supports all those affected by Lewy body dementias through outreach, education and research. To learn more about LBD and LBDA, please visit www.lbda.org. - See more at: http://www.lbda.org/node/1891#sthash.9W2yUPjh.dpuf