Frontotemporal dementia

2. Frontotemporal dementia and younger people

Frontotemporal dementia is much less common than other forms of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease or vascular dementia. However, it is a significant cause of dementia in younger people – that is, those under the age of 65. Frontotemporal dementia is probably the third most common cause of dementia in this age group and some studies even place it second most common. It affects men and women roughly equally.

Frontotemporal dementia is most often diagnosed between the ages of 45 and 65. However, it can also affect people younger or older than this, and it is probably under-recognised in older people. Even so, this ‘peak age’ for FTD (the age at which it is most often diagnosed) is much younger than the age at which people are most often diagnosed with the more common types of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease.

Being diagnosed at a younger age is likely to present someone with a different set of challenges. They may still be working, have financial commitments or dependent children, and want different services and support. For more information about these issues see young-onset dementia.