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Dementia & Neuropsychologia

Print version ISSN 1980-5764

Abstract

O'CONNOR, Claire M. et al. Enhancement of carer skills and patient function in the non-pharmacological management of frontotemporal dementia (FTD): A call for randomised controlled studies. Dement. neuropsychol. [online]. 2013, vol.7, n.2, pp.143-150. ISSN 1980-5764.  https://doi.org/10.1590/S1980-57642013DN70200002.

FTD is a unique condition which manifests with a range of behavioural symptoms, marked dysfunction in activities of daily living (ADL) and increased levels of carer burden as compared to carers of other dementias. No efficacious pharmacological interventions to treat FTD currently exist, and research on pharmacological symptom management is variable. The few studies on non-pharmacological interventions in FTD focus on either the carer or the patients' symptoms, and lack methodological rigour. This paper reviews and discusses current studies utilising non-pharmacological approaches, exposing the clear need for more rigorous methodologies to be applied in this field. Finally, a successful randomised controlled trial helped reduce behaviours of concern in dementia, and through implementing participation in tailored activities, the FTD-specific Tailored Activities Program (TAP) is presented. Crucially, this protocol has scope to target both the person with FTD and their carer. This paper highlights that studies in this area would help to elucidate the potential for using activities to reduce characteristic behaviours in FTD, improving quality of life and the caregiving experience in FTD.

Keywords : frontotemporal dementia; non-pharmacological intervention; functional disability; randomised controlled trial.

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