West Virginia residents who suffer from Lewy body dementia, or LBD, may have their condition misdiagnosed. That’s because the condition’s symptoms are very similar to well-known diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. Even though almost 1.4 million people in the United States are believed to have LBD, many medical professionals are not familiar with the condition.

LBD is a complex and progressive disorder of the brain. With this condition, Lewy bodies, or abnormal deposits of the alpha-synuclein protein, accumulate in the parts of the brain that oversee movement, cognition and behavior. It is a progressively debilitating disease that impacts the autonomic function of the body, including temperature regulation, bladder function, blood pressure control and bowel function. People who suffer from LBD are also likely to act out their dreams or have visual hallucinations.

The causes behind the development of LBD have not yet been confirmed. However, it’s believed that there are multiple factors that contribute to LBD, including environmental risk factors and genetics. In addition to the processes that occur during natural aging, environmental risk factors are believed to make people more likely to develop LBD.

In most cases, those with LBD will have impaired thinking. They’ll also experience difficulty comprehending visual information and performing executive functions, such as processing information or planning. LBD sufferers may also experience problems with attentiveness or have difficulty with movement.

A medical malpractice attorney can advise a client whose debilitating medical condition has been misdiagnosed. A lawsuit could lead to compensation that covers medical bills and other damages.