Apathy has the strongest association with weight loss of all the behavioral syndromes of dementia. Residents 65+ in nursing homes in The Netherlands were studied for 15 months and four behavioral symptoms were assessed (depression, apathy, agitation, rejection of care). Depression has been believed to be a major cause of weight loss in those with dementia, but this study found apathy to be more strongly associated. For future treatment, apathy needs to be distinguished from depression. (Free abstract only.)

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