The family of legendary actor Bruce Willis has given a poignant update on his health, after revealing last year that he had been diagnosed with aphasia. The family recently shared a joint statement with the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration, disclosing that the actor's condition has now progressed and that he has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia (FTD).
The Progression of Frontotemporal Dementia
In March of 2022, the Willis family announced that the "Die Hard" star would be stepping away from acting due to the impacts of aphasia on his cognitive abilities. Now, nearly a year later, the family has shared the more specific diagnosis of FTD, which they called a "cruel disease."
FTD: A Disease in Need of Awareness and Research
In the joint statement, the family highlighted the challenges of communication as just one of the symptoms that Bruce faces.
They wrote, “We now have a more specific diagnosis: frontotemporal dementia (known as FTD). Unfortunately, challenges with communication are just one symptom of the disease Bruce faces. While this is painful, it is a relief to finally have a clear diagnosis”.
The family went on to call FTD the most common form of dementia, and expressed their hope that more awareness and research will lead to treatments in the future. “Today there are no treatments for the disease, a reality that we hope can change in the years ahead.
As Bruce’s condition advances, we hope that any media attention can be focused on shining a light on this disease that needs far more awareness and research,” they added. The statement, signed by Willis's wife Emma, his ex-partner Demi Moore, and their five children, emphasized the actor's commitment to using his voice to help others and raise awareness about important issues.
The family wrote, "We know in our hearts that – if he could today – he would want to respond by bringing global attention and a connectedness with those who are also dealing with this debilitating disease and how it impacts so many individuals and their families." Bruce Willis, 67, is best known for his iconic role as police officer John McClane in the "Die Hard" franchise.
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