Robin Williams' death shocked his fans when news of his suicide hit the headlines on Aug. 11. His battle with depression helped to shed light on the disease which as many as one in ten U.S. citizens have suffered.

Now, as results of his autopsy are being disclosed, another disease is being put into the radar. According to reports, Williams' diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease (PD) just before his death may have actually been Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB) - a neurological disorder that is the second-most common type of dementia in the United States after Parkinson's.

The family of Robin Williams believes that the misdiagnosis of DLB was the trigger that led him on the path towards increased depression and suicide. However, the Lewy Body Dementia Association says that if that were so, it would be a rare case because most patients with DLB, although can suffer increased hallucinations which can get worse when treated wrong with Parkinson's medication, do not usually result in suicide.

"Mr. Williams was given a clinical diagnosis of PD and treated for motor symptoms. The report confirms he experienced depression, anxiety and paranoia, which may occur in either Parkinson's disease or dementia with Lewy bodies," Dr. Dennis Dickson of the LBDA Scientific Advisory Council said in an official statement.


DLB causes lumps of a protein substance (the "bodies") to form in the neurological pathways of the brain and hinder proper function. Patients with DLB exhibit symptoms that can be very easily mistaken for PD and even Alzheimer's Disease, especially in the early stages. DLB also causes convincing visual hallucinations in patients, and more rarely, auditory hallucinations. Medications for DLB can even trigger symptoms that look like Parkinson's.

DLB was cited in the first paragraph of the forensic report on Williams' autopsy.

Another celebrity who recently announced that he suffers from DLB is radio host, Casey Kasem, 82, who was also misdiagnosed with advanced Parkinson's in the early stages of the disease.

ⓒ 2021 TECHTIMES.com All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.