Last year, Bruce Willis announced that he was stepping away from his acting career after his diagnosis of aphasia, a rare neurological condition that affects speech and the way the brain understands spoken and written communication.
On Thursday, his family announced that his condition has worsened and that Willis has also been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia, a condition caused by progressive nerve cell loss in the front lobes.
In a statement on the website for the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration, his family said: “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.”
Bruce’s daughter, Rumer, also shared a photo of her father on instagram, showing him smiling on a beach with the caption: “Our family wanted to start by expressing our deepest gratitude for the incredible outpouring of love, support and wonderful stories we have all received since sharing Bruce’s original diagnosis. In the spirit of that, we wanted to give you an update about our beloved husband, father and friend since we now have a deeper understanding of what he is experiencing.”
She signed off on the post with the signature ‘Ladies of Willis/Moore’, a nod to her sisters and mother, Demi Moore, as well as Bruce’s wife, Emma Hemming Willis.
Frontotemporal dementia is typically diagnosed at a younger age than other types of dementia and is, according to the Mayo Clinic, the cause of 10 – 20% of all dementia diagnosis. which is often diagnosed at a younger age than other forms of dementia. Symptoms of the condition include personality changes, speech difficulty and motor impairment.
Many celebrities and friends of the Willis/Moore family have come out in support and gratitude that Bruce has shone a light on an illness that affects many people each year.
Aaron Paul, of Breaking Bad fame, commented on Rumer’s post, staying “Sending hugs to you and that beautiful family of yours. Your pops is such a damn legend.”
The family concluded their statement with: “Bruce has always found joy in life — and has helped everyone he knows to do the same. Your continued compassion, understanding, and respect will enable us to help Bruce live as full a life as possible.”