The presence and co-incidence of geriatric syndromes in older patients with mild-moderate Lewy body dementia

BMC Neurol. 2022 Sep 19;22(1):355. doi: 10.1186/s12883-022-02897-7.


Introduction: Geriatric symptoms are common in dementia cases, while few studies have focused on these symptoms in Lewy body dementia (LBD). The purpose of this study is to investigate the distributions of Apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 and geriatric symptoms, and explore their associaitons in Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Parkinson's disease dementia (PDD).

Methods: A retrospective study with 185 mild-moderate probable DLB (n = 93) and PDD (n = 92) patients was assigned. Demographic and clinical characteristics, neuropsychological assessments, and APOE genotypes were recorded. Description, correlation and logistic regression models were used to analyze the presence of geriatric symptom complaints and their associations with APOE ε4.

Results: DLB patients displayed more frequency of fluctuating cognition, visual hallucination, rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder, delusion, depression, anxiety, apathy, and loss of appetite, whereas the PDD cases had constipation, fear of falling, and insomnia more frequently. The APOE ε4 allele was more common in DLB than PDD (29.9% vs. 7.0%, p < 0.001), and the patients with DLB + APOE ε4 (+) were presented more delusions (p = 0.005) and apathy (p = 0.007) than patients with PDD + APOE ε4 (+). We also found that the APOE ε4 allele was significantly associated with hyperhidrosis (OR = 3.472, 95%CI: 1.082-11.144, p = 0.036) and depression (OR = 3.002, 95%CI: 1.079-8.353, p = 0.035) in DLB patients, while there were no significant associations between APOE ε4 allele and the age at visit, the age at onset, scores of MDS-UPDRS III, H&Y stage, ADL, MMSE, MOCA and NPI, as well as the presences of fluctuating cognition, VH, parkinsonism and RBD in both groups.

Conclusion: The presence and co-incidence of geriatric symptoms are common in patients with mild-moderate LBD. The presence of APOE ε4 allele is associated with hyperhidrosis and depression, but not global cognition, activitives of daily life, motor function and other neuropsychitric symptoms in DLB. These findings improve the awareness of geriatric symptoms, and contribute to the healthcare management of mild-moderate DLB and PDD.

Keywords: APOE ε4 carriers; Dementia with Lewy bodies; Fall; Neuropsychiatric symptom; Parkinson’s disease dementia.

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls
  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease* / complications
  • Apolipoprotein E4
  • Apolipoproteins E
  • Dementia* / complications
  • Dementia* / epidemiology
  • Dementia* / genetics
  • Fear
  • Humans
  • Hyperhidrosis* / complications
  • Incidence
  • Lewy Body Disease* / complications
  • Lewy Body Disease* / epidemiology
  • Lewy Body Disease* / genetics
  • Parkinson Disease* / complications
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Syndrome


  • Apolipoprotein E4
  • Apolipoproteins E