What is FTD?

Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) is a disease process that affects the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain.  It causes a group of brain disorders that are characterized by behavior, language and/or motor symptoms, and an inevitable deterioration in a person’s ability to function.  FTD encompasses multiple subtypes and several different pathologies; changing terminology and its related acronyms sometimes can be quite daunting.

The terminology will continue to shift over the coming years–but this is encouraging. The evolving scientific language reflects the increasing pace of scientific discovery. As physicians and researchers learn more about FTD at the cellular and molecular levels, the role of specific proteins, genes and compounds in development of the disease are identified. And as our understanding of these diseases changes, so too will the words we use to describe them.

You may find differences in the terms used within the field, but do not be shy about asking your physician –or AFTD—for clarification. And, more importantly, do not be discouraged – these shifts in vocabulary are an important sign of progress as research points the way to targets for treatment and a cure.

Fast Facts about FTD - a quick glance at what FTD is, its prevalence and a few facts and figures.

Glossary of Terms - some of the most commonly used terms and their meanings surrounding frontotemporal degeneration.