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From the Literature: Parkinson's Disease

Review the results of several recent studies that looked at the use of technology in diagnosing and treating Parkinson's disease.

The Impact of Left Prefrontal Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation on Depression in Parkinson's Disease: A Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Study

Journal: Movement Disorders (August 24, 2010)

Authors: Pal E, Nagy F, Aschermannn Z, et al.

Purpose: To confirm the hypothesis that “repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) seems to have an antidepressive effect on patients with Parkinson's disease (PD).”

Results: Although the authors suggest their results should be confirmed in studies looking at patients with PD who also have severe depression, they found that left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex rTMS had beneficial effects on depression in patients with PD for at least 30 days after treatment.

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Deep Brain Stimulation for Camptocormia in Dystonia and Parkinson's Disease

Journal: Journal of Neurology (August 28, 2010)

Authors: Capelle H, Schrader C, Blahak C, et al.

Purpose: To determine the effects of deep brain stimulation on camptocormia (bent spine syndrome), comparing primary dystonia to idiopathic Parkinson’s disease.

Results: Although GPi (globus pallidus pars interna) deep brain stimulation is effective in treating camptocormia in dystonia, “response of camptocormia to chronic STN [subthalamic nucleus] or GPi DBS in PD is more heterogenous. The latter may be due to a variety of causes and needs further clarification.”

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Transcranial Doppler Monitoring in Parkinson's Disease: Cerebrovascular Compensation of Orthostatic Hypotension

Journal: Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology (August 30, 2010)

Authors: Haubrich C, Pies K, Dafotakis M, et al.

Purpose: To determine if “cerebral blood flow regulation explain[s] why orthostatic hypotension (OH) has often no accompanying symptoms” in patients with Parkinson’s disease.

Results: “Results showed a normal autoregulatory response to downward blood pressure shifts in PD. Moreover, orthostatic blood pressure instability is compensated equally sufficient in anterior and posterior parts of cerebral circulation. Whether in PD patients, OH becomes symptomatic rather seems to depend on blood pressure falling below the autoregulated range.”

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