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Keywords:

  • Addiction;
  • dopamine dysregulation syndrome;
  • dopamine replacement therapy;
  • impulse control disorders;
  • Parkinson's disease;
  • psychostimulants

ABSTRACT

The compulsive use of dopamine replacement therapy (DRT) or dopamine dysregulation syndrome (DDS) is one of the behavioural disturbances reported in some patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) and other disorders who are receiving DRT. We draw this phenomenon to the attention of the addiction field as a topic deserving of more systematic study. We outline: the clinical features, epidemiology and clinical correlates of the disorder; the unresolved issues in its definition and diagnosis; and its potential relevance to neurobiological models of psychostimulant addiction. We argue that compulsive DRT use may provide a useful model for drug addiction, while advancing our understanding of the neurobiology of addiction and improving the management of PD patients with the disorder.