What a dementia diagnosis may mean for ‘Partridge Family’ star David Cassidy

The 66-year-old actor, widely known for his starring role as Keith Partridge on the 1970s series The Partridge Family, reveals to PEOPLE that he is fighting the memory loss disease


Former star of The Partridge Family David Cassidy revealed that he is suffering from dementia.

Cassidy’s representative, Jo-Ann Geffen, confirmed to USA TODAY Monday that Cassidy, 66, has been battling the memory-destroying brain disorder.

The former teen idol told People his family has a history of dementia and he always “knew this was coming.”

Cassidy said he is no longer touring as a musician so he can focus on his health and happiness.

But what does a dementia diagnosis mean for Cassidy? Here’s a few common questions about dementia.

What is dementia?

Dementia is a general term for memory loss or loss of mental abilities that interfere with daily life, according to Esther Oh, associate director of the Johns Hopkins Memory and Alzheimer’s Treatment Center.

“Dementia is an umbrella term,” Oh said adding that information on what form of Dementia Cassidy has hasn’t been released. “If you are diagnosed with dementia, he could have Alzheimer’s, or he could have dementia from a small stroke like vascular dementia, there is also a dementia that affects younger adults called frontotemporal dementia.”

Dementia addresses symptoms, which may include memory loss, personality changes, confusion and disorientation, anxiety, difficulty planning and organizing or handling complex tasks, according to Mayo Clinic.

While some symptoms of dementia may be the cause of…