COVID-19 Creating “Perfect Storm” for Families Grappling with FTD


The situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic can place extraordinary strain on persons diagnosed with FTD and their caregivers, creating what AlzForum refers to as the “perfect storm” for families facing dementia.

Though having FTD does not increase susceptibility to the virus, some behaviors from cognitive impairment may increase a person’s risk. The article further expands upon difficulties related to FTD and social distancing practices, as well as communication barriers resulting from primary progressive aphasia (PPA) that can lead to trouble understanding the situation and/or communicating needs.

As AFTD Medical Advisory Council member Marsel Mesulam, M.D., of Northwestern University in Chicago, further explains: “With social isolation on one hand, and difficulty communicating on the other, people with PPA are hit with a double whammy.”

In addition to concerns surrounding health and safety, the article emphasizes the increased burden placed on caregivers who, due to self-isolation measures, are taking on even more work themselves. The article also covers challenges faced by home health aides, continuing care facilities, and doctors, as well as the impact on the persons diagnosed and families who rely on their services.

Click here to read the article. To find further information and resources regarding COVID-19 and FTD, visit AFTD’s website.

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