• Parkinson's disease;
  • artists;
  • creativity;
  • DDS;
  • dopamine


A small proportion of patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) develop a dopamine dysregulation syndrome (DDS). Management of such patients can be difficult; hence, early identification and careful monitoring of at-risk individuals are important. Based on four illustrative cases, we wish to draw attention to the risk of developing DDS in PD patients engaged in a creative and artistic profession, who compulsively abuse dopaminergic drugs to maintain or enhance their artistic creativity. Balancing the drug requirement for treating motor symptoms on one hand and improving creativity on the other hand has to be carefully evaluated and early neuropsychiatric intervention may be necessary. Apart from the known risk factors—young age at PD onset, male gender, heavy alcohol consumption, illegal drug use, and history of affective disorder—engagement in a creative or artistic profession may be an additional risk factor for developing DDS. © 2010 Movement Disorder Society