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Stereotypical movements and frontotemporal dementia

Authors

  • Mario F. Mendez MD, PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Neurology, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, USA
    2. Department of Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California at Los Angeles and Veterans Administration Greater Los Angeles Healthcare Center, Los Angeles, California, USA
    • Neurobehavior Unit (691/116AF), VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare Center, 11301 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA. 90073
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  • Jill S. Shapira RN, PhD,

    1. Department of Neurology, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, USA
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  • Bruce L. Miller MD

    1. Department of Neurology, University of California at San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA
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Abstract

Stereotypical movements are characteristic of autism or mental retardation but can also occur in patients with dementia, particularly frontotemporal dementia (FTD). In this study, we administered the Abnormal Involuntary Movement Scale (AIMS) to 18 patients with FTD and to 18 patients with the most common form of dementia, Alzheimer's disease (AD). The AIMS scores were gathered at the initial presentation of patients who had not received antipsychotic medications. Compared to the AD patients, the FTD patients had significantly more stereotypical movements, including frequent rubbing behaviors and some self-injurious acts. All the FTD patients with stereotypical movements had compulsive-like behaviors, suggesting a similar pathophysiologic cause, and most had a decrease in their stereotypical movements with the administration of sertraline, a serotonin selective reuptake inhibitor. © 2005 Movement Disorder Society

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