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Abstract

Twenty-two patients with Parkinson's disease drawn from a community-based study were followed prospectively until their deaths. Even though 18 patients had dementia, none fulfilled Braak and Braak or The National Institute on Aging and Ronald and Nancy Reagan Institute of the Alzheimer's Association, whereas all patients had limbic or neocortical Lewy body disease. The Lewy body score and Braak and Braak stage were significantly associated with the rate of cognitive decline, but only the Lewy body score was associated with the rate of cognitive decline in the univariate analyses. This study strongly suggests that Lewy body disease is the main substrate driving the progression of cognitive impairment in Parkinson's disease. Ann Neurol 2005;58:773–776