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Do nonmotor symptoms in Parkinson's disease differ from normal aging?

Authors

  • Syam Krishnan MD, DM,

    1. Comprehensive Care Centre for Movement Disorders, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Kerala, India
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  • Gangadhara Sarma MA,

    1. Comprehensive Care Centre for Movement Disorders, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Kerala, India
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  • Sankara Sarma PhD,

    1. Achutha Menon Centre for Health Science Studies, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Kerala, India
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  • Asha Kishore MD, DM

    Corresponding author
    1. Comprehensive Care Centre for Movement Disorders, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Kerala, India
    • Professor of Neurology, Comprehensive Care Centre for Movement Disorders, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Kerala, India 695011
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  • Relevant conflicts of interest/financial disclosures: Nothing to report.

  • Full financial disclosures and author roles may be found in the online version of this article.

Abstract

Background:

Nonmotor symptoms in Parkinson's disease are frequent and affect health-related quality of life of patients. The severity and domains of nonmotor symptoms involved in Parkinson's disease and normal aging have not been compared before.

Methods:

We performed a prospective case–control study to assess the frequency and severity of nonmotor symptoms in patients with Parkinson's disease (n = 174) and age-matched normal controls (n = 128) using the Non-Motor Symptoms Scale.

Results:

Nonmotor symptoms in Parkinson's disease were ubiquitous, more frequent, and more severe than in normal aging, particularly in women. Cardiovascular, mood/cognition, and perceptual problems/hallucinations domains were rarely involved in age-matched controls. Age had no effect and sex some influence on nonmotor symptoms in Parkinson's disease. In contrast, in controls, nonmotor symptoms increased with age, and sex had no effect.

Conclusions:

Nonmotor symptoms in Parkinson's disease differ from those in aging in frequency, severity, sex predilection, and domain involvement. © 2011 Movement Disorder Society

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