Mixed dementia is a very common cause for dementia. As the name implies, the cause is not just one problem, but a mixture. Mixed dementia refers to dementia caused by both Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia. The disease is progressive and shortens lifespan.
Because a patient with mixed dementia is dealing with two problems, the clinical course may be rockier than those with just Alzheimer’s disease or vascular dementia alone.
There is no cure for mixed dementia, since there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease or vascular dementia. But not having a cure is very different from not being able to do things that may help. A comprehensive evaluation can help clarify if a person’s cause for dementia is due to mixed dementia, and guide as to what can be done to help optimize cognitive function and reduce risk factors for decline. Physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language therapy, and/or swallow therapy may also be recommended.