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What are the symptoms of vascular dementia?

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Quick Answer

Symptoms of vascular dementia include confusion, disorientation, trouble speaking or understanding speech, and loss of vision, according to the Alzheimer's Association. Additional symptoms include sudden headache, difficulty walking, and numbness or paralysis on one side of the face or the body.

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Full Answer

Vascular dementia can also involve a change in thinking skills, which may occur suddenly following a stroke, notes the Alzheimer’s Association. Cumulative damage can also occur when small changes gradually worsen over time as the result of many minor strokes or other conditions that affect smaller blood vessels.

Vascular dementia is a medical condition that causes brain damage that leads to problems with reasoning, planning, judgment, memory and other cognitive processes, according to Mayo Clinic. It can occur after a stroke blocks an artery to the brain; however, vascular dementia is not always caused by strokes. It can also be the result of other conditions that damage blood vessels and reduce blood circulation, thereby depriving the brain of oxygen and nutrients.

Treatment options focus on catching the ailment early and preventing further damage, according to WebMD. Although existing damage cannot be repaired, future damage can be minimized by controlling the conditions that cause the problem, typically through exercise, diet and medication. Depending on the scope and severity of the condition, the treating physician may recommend lowering blood pressure, reducing cholesterol levels and controlling blood sugar if the patient is diabetic, says Mayo Clinic.

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