Original ArticlesDegenerative Dementias and Their Medical Care in the MoviesSegers, Kurt MD* †Author Information *Memory Clinic of the Department of Neurology †Memory Clinic of the Day Care Hospital of the Geriatric Department, Brugmann University Hospital, Brussels, Belgium There were no sources of financial support. Reprints: Kurt Segers, MD, Neurology Department, CHU Brugmann, Place A. Van Gehuchten 4, 1020 Brussels, Belgium (e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org). Received for publication September 6, 2006; accepted November 2, 2006 Disclosure: The author has reported no conflicts of interest. Alzheimer Disease & Associated Disorders: January-March 2007 - Volume 21 - Issue 1 - p 55-59 doi: 10.1097/WAD.0b013e31802f2460 Buy Metrics Abstract Compared with other neurologic problems, few films have been dedicated to degenerative dementia. To our knowledge, this is the first systematic review about the way in which dementia patients and their medical care are described in films. Twenty-four of the 53 relevant films that were found in online movie databases could be viewed. The author describes the demographics of the characters suffering from dementia, the clinical picture including neuropsychiatric manifestations, diagnostic procedures, medical follow-up, pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic treatment and the attitude of the caregivers. Most characters are played by actors in their seventh or eighth decade. There is an overrepresentation of highly educated people. Although the clinical picture is often accurate, some films suggest that even in the late stages of the disease patients have sudden moments of full insight in their disease. Among the neuropsychiatric signs, activity disturbances and aggressiveness are most often described. Few patients seek medical help, only 2 patients take acetylcholinesterase inhibitors and follow-up is absent for 5 of the 11 relevant patients. Only in 10 of 23 films, the term “Alzheimer” is used. Although there is a growing cinematographic interest in Alzheimer patients, even recent films tend to reinforce therapeutic and even diagnostic nihilism. © 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.