Objective: To quantify visual discrimination, space-motion, and object-form perception in patients with Parkinson disease dementia (PDD), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), and Alzheimer disease (AD).
Methods: The authors used a cross-sectional study to compare three demented groups matched for overall dementia severity (PDD: n = 24; DLB: n = 20; AD: n = 23) and two age-, sex-, and education-matched control groups (PD: n = 24, normal controls [NC]: n = 25).
Results: Visual perception was globally more impaired in PDD than in nondemented controls (NC, PD), but was not different from DLB. Compared to AD, PDD patients tended to perform worse in all perceptual scores. Visual perception of patients with PDD/DLB and visual hallucinations was significantly worse than in patients without hallucinations.
Conclusions: Parkinson disease dementia (PDD) is associated with profound visuoperceptual impairments similar to dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) but different from Alzheimer disease. These findings are consistent with previous neuroimaging studies reporting hypoactivity in cortical areas involved in visual processing in PDD and DLB.