Pick’s disease

The terms Pick’s disease and Fronto-temporal dementia (FTD) are often used interchangeably. Pick’s disease is the behavioral variant of FTD. Typically, changes in behavior, emotions and personality. The person with dementia often reacts unpredictably, compulsively or unrestrained and has difficulty judging situations.

‘Pick cells’

In some people with fronto-temporal dementia, so-called ‘pick cells’ occur; that are balloon-shaped, swollen brain cells in the frontal and temporal lobes. These specific cells are not present in many cases. That is why the name fronto-temporal dementia is usually used for Pick’s disease.

This form of dementia often occurs at a relatively young age. Most people who get the disease are between 50 and 60 years old. They often still have an active role in society and sometimes children still live at home. This means that the disease has an extra impact on the environment.

Life expectancy Pick’s disease

The average life expectancy is six to eight years. Brain damage causes people to suffer from physical disorders such as swallowing problems. These can lead to pneumonia, a complication that many people with Fronto-temporal dementia die from.