The Behavioral Dyscontrol Scale (BDS) is a brief measure of frontal systems that is adopted from Luria's syndrome analysis approach. The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic utility of the BDS as an objective measure of self-regulation in behavioral variant of frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD). Two patient groups matched in education and dementia severity (n = 21 bvFTD and 21 AD) recruited from a memory clinic and a matched normal control (NC) group (n = 21) were administered a battery of neuropsychological tests including the BDS. ROC analyses revealed that performance on the BDS discriminated between the bvFTD group and the AD and NC groups, as well as between AD and NC groups. Hierarchical multiple linear regression analysis showed that the majority of the variance in BDS performance was explained by executive tests. the BDS has good psychometric prosperities; is easy to administer and score; is well tolerated by geriatric patients; and is useful diagnostically for discriminating bvFTD from AD, yielding good to excellent sensitivity and specificity values.