Cognitive problems in Parkinson’s highlighted at the International MDS Congress this week
Caroline Williams-Gray delivered a talk on cognitive problems in Parkinson’s disease at the International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders in Nice this week. She highlighted the fact that problems with memory and thinking affect around a third of people even in the early stages of the disease, and these problems can evolve into dementia . This has a major impact on quality of life and care needs, and is a complication of the disease that we can’t currently slow down or prevent with treatment. However not all cognitive problems in Parkinson’s will lead to dementia – in some cases these problems remain stable or even improve over time. Caroline explained how our work here in Cambridge over the past 20 years has contributed to our understanding of this variability in cognitive problems in PD, leading to the definition of distinct cognitive syndromes which have different genetic and biological bases. We can now use this information to better predict how cognitive problems will develop in individuals with PD, which will help us to better plan their management, and to identify the most suitable participants for future clinical trials.