Results Published on Cognitive Performance and Neuropsychatric Symptoms

Cognitive impairment and neuropsychiatric symptoms (NPS), such as depression, apathy, and anxiety, frequently affect the daily quality of life of people with Parkinson’s, though there is still limited understanding of the correlation with these and PD.  In a paper published in Movement Disorders, Weintraub, et al. investigate the prevalence of such symptoms in early, unmedicated people with Parkinson’s compared with healthy controls (HCs) using the PPMI baseline visit data.

This analysis showed that PD patients were over twice as likely to have clinically significant depressive symptoms as HCs.  PD patients also had significantly higher rates of anxiety and apathy compared to HCs, and about 10% of PD patients were found to have cognitive impairment.  NPS that are associated with dopaminergic replacement therapy (for example, impulse control disorders) were not found or were rare in this de novo PD group.  Future investigations are being planned around predictors of these symptoms and how correlations and prevalence rates change over the course of the disease.

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