Abstract

Multiple neurodegenerative disorders (e.g. Alzheimer's disease, Dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson's disease, and Huntington's disease) show olfactory deficits. Olfactory functioning has not been well studied in frontotemporal dementia (FTD). In the current study, individuals with FTD, Alzheimer's disease (AD), and healthy elderly controls were compared using an odor identification task. Results showed significant differences in odor identification between individuals with FTD and the healthy elderly control group. There were no differences between the FTD and AD groups. Using a cut score of 8/12, discriminant function analysis showed that the overall classification rate for the FTD and control groups was 71.4%, with a sensitivity rate of 87.5% and a specificity rate of 65%. This preliminary research demonstrates olfactory deficits in FTD, which appear to be similar in magnitude to the olfactory deficits seen in AD.