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Keywords:

  • Parkinson's disease;
  • postural control;
  • pallidotomy;
  • center of foot pressure;
  • sway area;
  • total sway path length

Abstract

We compared postural sway parameters during a 1-minute quiet stance in 28 patients with idiopathic Parkinson's disease (PD) in off phase with those in 17 age-matched normal subjects and investigated differences in the sway parameters before and after unilateral pallidotomy in 16 PD patients. The PD patients showed larger sway area (SA) and longer total sway path length (SPL) compared with normal subjects. Total SPL after subtraction of tremor effect did not differ from that in normal subjects. The shift of the mean center of foot pressure (CFP) position from the first 30 seconds to the last 30 seconds showed that the CFP tended to move forward in PD patients compared with normal subjects and to move laterally more in PD patients than normal subjects, especially in those with less severity (Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, motor score < 40). After the operation, there was little change in either SA or lateral movement of CFP, but forward movement of CFP and total SPL tended to be normalized, along with an improvement of major parkinsonian symptoms. From these results, it is concluded that SPL elongation significantly involves tremor effect, forward movement of CFP in PD derives from basal ganglia dysfunction, and SA enlargement and large lateral movement of CFP may be caused partly by compensatory movements or by dysfunction outside the basal ganglia circuitry. © 2003 Movement Disorder Society