Wine drinking and essential tremor: A possible protective role


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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the possible association of cigarette smoking, coffee drinking, and wine consumption with essential tremor using a matched case–control design. Cases and controls were enrolled from 6 Movement Disorder centers in central-southern Italy. Essential tremor was diagnosed according to Bain's criteria. Three unrelated healthy controls (not affected by neurological disorders) per each enrolled case, matched by sex and age (±5 years), were selected. A standardized questionnaire was administered to record demographic, epidemiological, and clinical data. All cases and controls underwent a standard neurological examination. Adjusted odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were estimated using conditional logistic regression for the matched cases and controls. Eighty-three patients with essential tremor (38 men and 45 women; mean age, 68.2 ± 8.6 years) and 245 matched control subjects (113 men and 132 women; mean age, 68.4 ± 9.7 years) were enrolled in the study. Multivariate analysis showed a significant negative association between essential tremor and wine consumption preceding the onset of disease (adjusted odds ratio, 0.23; 95% confidence interval, 0.08–0.64; P = .0005) with a significant dose effect (1–2 glass of wine per day: odds ratio, 0.32; 95% confidence interval, 0.10–0.95; P = .04; more than 3 glass of wine per day: odds ratio, 0.14; 95% confidence interval, 0.03–0.62; P = .01). In our sample no association between essential tremor and cigarette smoking or coffee drinking was found. Our data suggest a negative association between wine drinking and essential tremor, which could be explained by the long-term neuroprotective effect of its antioxidant components. © 2011 Movement Disorder Society