Your browser does not support javascript:   Search for gard hereSearch for news-and-events here.


Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Print friendly version

Frontotemporal dementia

Other Names for this Disease
  • Dementia, frontotemporal, with parkinsonism
  • Frontotemporal dementia with parkinsonism
  • Frontotemporal lobe dementia (FLDEM)
  • FTD
  • MSTD
More Names
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.


Frontotemporal dementia describes a group of conditions associated with shrinking of the frontal and temporal anterior lobes of the brain. Symptoms include either variable changes in behavior (e.g., impulsive, bored, listless, lack of social contact, lack of empathy, distractibility, blunted emotions, compulsive behavior, decreased energy and motivation) or problems with language (e.g., difficulty making or understanding speech). Spatial skills and memory remain intact. There is a strong genetic component to the disease; it often runs in families. There is no cure for frontotemporal dementia at this time, as a result treatment remains supportive.[1]

Although the name and classification of FTD has been a topic of discussion for over a century, the current classification of the syndrome groups together Pick’s disease, primary progressive aphasia, and semantic dementia as FTD. Some doctors propose adding corticobasal degeneration and progressive supranuclear palsy to FTD and calling the group Pick Complex.[1] You can click on the links to view the GARD pages on these conditions.
Last updated: 8/22/2011


  1. NINDS Frontotemporal Dementia Information Page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). 2011; Accessed 4/19/2011.
Your Questions Answered
by the Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center

Please contact us with your questions about Frontotemporal dementia. We will answer your question and update these pages with new resources and information.

Basic Information

In Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. Click on the link to view this information. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • MeSH® (Medical Subject Headings) is a terminology tool used by the National Library of Medicine. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
  • The Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is an catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Frontotemporal dementia. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.

Insurance Issues