The abnormality of N30 somatosensory evoked potential in idiopathic Parkinson's disease is unrelated to disease stage or clinical scores and insensitive to dopamine manipulations



We recorded short latency somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) to median nerve stimuli in 40 patients affected by idiopathic Parkinson's disease (PD) classified from I to IV on the Hoehn and Yahr disability scale. SEPs were recorded before and after chronic administration of L-Dopa and bromocriptine, before and after acute administration of L-Dopa. Fourteen patients experiencing wearing off and dystonic-dyskinetic disturbances were recorded during the occurrence of these oscillations of their clinical status. Absent or reduced N30 components were found in 32.5% of patients. SEPs were not modified by acute or chronic administration of L-Dopa or bromocriptine or during off and dystonic or dyskinetic conditions. Multiple correlations of N30 with scores of the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale showed that N30 abnormality did not classify patient with prominent clinical features, nor did it predict the outcome of treatment.