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Police Interactions Among Neuropathologically Confirmed Dementia Patients

Prevalence and Cause

Liljegren, Madeleine, MD*; Landqvist Waldö, Maria, MD, PhD; Rydbeck, Robert, MD, PhD; Englund, Elisabet, MD, PhD*

Alzheimer Disease & Associated Disorders: October-December 2018 - Volume 32 - Issue 4 - p 346–350
doi: 10.1097/WAD.0000000000000267
Original Articles

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate and compare the prevalence and recurrence of police interaction (PI) with patients diagnosed with dementia. We also aimed to study the reason behind the PI, the time of occurrence of PI, and potential consequences of the PI.

Methods: For this retrospective medical records’ review, we included 281 cases with a neuropathologic dementia diagnosis from the Department of Pathology, Region Skane/Lund University, between 1967 and 2013. The diagnoses were Alzheimer disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration, vascular dementia, and mixed dementia. A prerequisite was that extensive clinical investigation and follow-up had been conducted at the Department of Geriatric Psychiatry in Lund.

Results: Of the 281 patients studied, 50 (18%) had a history of interacting with the police during the course of their disease. Frontotemporal dementia patients had a relatively higher prevalence of PI and more often due to criminal behavior. The recurrence of PIs differed among the groups; frontotemporal dementia patients exhibited a higher PI recurrence compared with the other groups.

Conclusions: The patterns of PIs differ between the frontotemporal dementia and Alzheimer disease patients. Knowledge about such differences may be of value for the police, the judiciary system, and the society in general.

*Division of Oncology and Pathology, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Lund/Department of Clinical Pathology, Region Skane

Division of Clinical Sciences, Helsingborg, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Helsingborg and Lund

Department of Forensic Psychiatry, Region Skane, Trelleborg, Sweden

The Hans-Gabriel and Alice Trolle-Wachtmeister Foundation for Medical Research, Lund, Sweden, grant number: 20161215 PhD student grant, Södra Sjukvårdsregionen, Region Skane, grant number: REGSKANE-729941 The Elly Berggren Foundation, grant number: 20161207.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Reprints: Madeleine Liljegren, MD, Tre Liljor 3, lgh 1305, Stockholm SE-113 44, Sweden (e-mail:

Received May 8, 2018

Accepted July 6, 2018

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