Things are sadly getting worse for Bruce Willis. According to a statement that the Willis Family shared today, the 67-year-old Die Hard star has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia (FTD), a brain disorder that is characterized by a range of serious symptoms, including behavioral changes (e.g., lack of judgment), speech and language problems (e.g., trouble naming things), and motor disorders (e.g., muscle weakness). People with FTD typically live six to eight years with their condition, sometimes longer, sometimes less, notes an author with the National Institute on Aging.
From a statement from the Willis Family:
Since we announced Bruce’s diagnosis of aphasia in spring 2022, Bruce’s condition has progressed and 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.
FTD is a cruel disease that many of us have never heard of and can strike anyone. For people under 60, FTD is the most common form of dementia, and because getting the diagnosis can take years, FTD is likely much more prevalent than we know. 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.
Bruce always believed in using his voice in the world to help others, and to raise awareness about important issues both publicly and privately. 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.