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Crimes May Be a Sign of Dementia

Some people with dementia, especially one type, may commit crimes as a result of their disease, a new study finds. This happens most often in people with a subtype of frontotemporal dementia, the study found. The new study was based on records from nearly 2,400 people. They included 545 with Alzheimer's disease. Another 171 had a form of frontotemporal dementia in which people lose their normal impulse control. About 37% of this smaller group had committed crimes. They included theft, traffic violations, trespassing and sexual offenses. About 8% of those with Alzheimer's had committed crimes. Researchers said the crimes are not intentional. They are caused by the brain disease. For 14 of those with frontotemporal dementia, the crimes were the first sign of dementia. Alzheimer's disease first affects areas of the brain that deal with memory.

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