Mayo Clinic doctors trained in nervous system conditions (neurologists) and other specialists diagnose Lewy body dementia.
To diagnose Lewy body dementia, your doctor will review your symptoms to help exclude other related conditions. Your doctor will conduct a physical examination and neurological examination and check for signs of other conditions that may cause similar symptoms, including Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Your doctor also may order several tests to help diagnose your condition and exclude other conditions.
- Mental status and neuropsychological tests. Your doctor will ask you questions and conduct tests to measure your thinking skills (cognitive skills). Your doctor may ask your family members questions about your emotional state and daily routines. You also may have a psychiatric assessment to test for behavior changes, depression or other mental illness.
- Blood tests. Tests will check your blood for infections or conditions such as vitamin deficiency, thyroid disorders and other factors that can cause memory loss.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). An MRI uses powerful radio waves and magnets to create a three-dimensional view of your brain. In this test, your doctor can view abnormalities in your brain that may be causing your symptoms.
- Computerized tomography (CT) scan. A CT scan uses a series of X-rays to create a detailed, three-dimensional view of your brain. Your doctor may use this test to detect abnormalities in your brain that may be causing your symptoms.
- Positron emission tomography (PET) scan or single-photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT). In these tests, a doctor injects you with a small amount of radioactive material and places emission detectors on your brain. PET provides visual images of brain activity. SPECT measures blood flow to various regions of your brain.
Read more about magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT) scan and positron emission tomography (PET) scan at MayoClinic.com.