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Neurology AND Movement disorders [keywords]
- Recurrent drop attacks in early childhood as presenting symptom of benign hereditary chorea caused by TITF1 gene mutations. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Dev Med Child Neurol 2014 Nov 20.
Drop attacks are sudden, spontaneous falls without loss of consciousness, followed by rapid recovery. Causes in children include severe epilepsies, movement disorders, cataplexy, and psychiatric disorders. We describe two children (a 3-year-old female and a 12-year-old male) with mild neuromotor delay and sudden falls appearing upon starting to walk. Extensive clinical and laboratory investigation was unremarkable. Twenty to 22 months after the onset of falls, both children developed subtle choreiform movements, affecting all four limbs, leading to frequent falls, at times causing traumatic injury. A heterozygous mutation of the TITF1/NKX2-1 gene (14q13) was detected in both patients, allowing the diagnosis of benign hereditary chorea (BHC). Treatment with levodopa attenuated abnormal movements and led to disappearance of drop attacks. A diagnosis of BHC should be considered in young children with recurrent and unexplained drop attacks, especially if associated with neuromotor delay, even in the absence of choreiform movements.
- Movement disorders in catatonia. [REVIEW]
- J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2014 Nov 19.
Catatonia is a complex neuropsychiatric syndrome characterised by a broad range of motor, speech and behavioural abnormalities. 'Waxy flexibility', 'posturing' and 'catalepsy' are among the well-recognised motor abnormalities seen in catatonia. However, there are many other motor abnormalities associated with catatonia. Recognition of the full spectrum of the phenomenology is critical for an accurate diagnosis. Although controlled trials are lacking benzodiazepines are considered first-line therapy and N-Methyl-d-aspartate receptor antagonists also appears to be effective. Electroconvulsive therapy is used in those patients who are resistant to medical therapy. An underlying cause of the catatonia should be identified and treated to ensure early and complete resolution of symptoms.
- The utility of polysomnography for the diagnosis of NREM parasomnias: an observational study over 4 years of clinical practice. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Neurol 2014 Nov 20.
Polysomnography (PSG) is considered the gold standard for diagnosis of non-rapid eye movement (NREM) parasomnias, however its diagnostic yield has been rarely reported. We aimed to assess the diagnostic value of polysomnography in different categories of patients with suspected NREM parasomnia and define variables that can affect the outcome. 124 adults referred for polysomnography for suspected NREM parasomnia were retrospectively identified and divided into clinical categories based on their history. Each polysomnography was analysed for features of NREM parasomnia or different sleep disorders and for presence of potential precipitants. The impact on the outcome of number of recording nights and concomitant consumption of benzodiazepines and antidepressants was assessed. Overall, PSG confirmed NREM parasomnias in 60.5 % patients and showed a different sleep disorder in another 16 %. Precipitants were found in 21 % of the 124 patients. However, PSG showed limited value when the NREM parasomnia was clinically uncomplicated, since it rarely revealed a different diagnosis or unsuspected precipitants (5 % respectively), but became essential for people with unusual features in the history where different or overlapping diagnoses (18 %) or unsuspected precipitants (24 %) were commonly identified. Taking benzodiazepines or antidepressants during the PSG reduced the diagnostic yield. PSG has a high diagnostic yield in patients with suspected NREM parasomnia, and can reveal a different diagnosis or precipitants in over 40 % of people with complicated or atypical presentation or those with a history of epilepsy. We suggest that PSG should be performed for one night in the first instance, with leg electrodes and respiratory measurements and after benzodiazepine and antidepressant withdrawal.
- An Update on the Use of Botulinum Toxin Therapy in Parkinson's Disease. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep 2015 Jan; 15(1):511.
Botulinum toxin (BoNT) has gained widespread use in a variety of neurological conditions. Parkinson's disease is a complex neurodegenerative disorder manifested by motor and non-motor symptoms that can cause significant disability. BoNT has been used to effectively treat a variety of symptoms related to Parkinson's disease. This review will examine the current therapeutic indications of BoNT use in the following disorders related to Parkinson's disease: cervical dystonia, blepharospasm and lid apraxia, focal hand dystonia, foot dystonia, laryngeal dystonia, oromandibular dystonia, camptocormia, hand and jaw tremor, sialorrhea, hyperhidrosis, dysphagia, constipation, and overactive bladder.
- Cerebellar Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (ctDCS): A Novel Approach to Understanding Cerebellar Function in Health and Disease. [REVIEW]
- Neuroscientist 2014 Nov 18.
The cerebellum is critical for both motor and cognitive control. Dysfunction of the cerebellum is a component of multiple neurological disorders. In recent years, interventions have been developed that aim to excite or inhibit the activity and function of the human cerebellum. Transcranial direct current stimulation of the cerebellum (ctDCS) promises to be a powerful tool for the modulation of cerebellar excitability. This technique has gained popularity in recent years as it can be used to investigate human cerebellar function, is easily delivered, is well tolerated, and has not shown serious adverse effects. Importantly, the ability of ctDCS to modify behavior makes it an interesting approach with a potential therapeutic role for neurological patients. Through both electrical and non-electrical effects (vascular, metabolic) ctDCS is thought to modify the activity of the cerebellum and alter the output from cerebellar nuclei. Physiological studies have shown a polarity-specific effect on the modulation of cerebellar-motor cortex connectivity, likely via cerebellar-thalamocortical pathways. Modeling studies that have assessed commonly used electrode montages have shown that the ctDCS-generated electric field reaches the human cerebellum with little diffusion to neighboring structures. The posterior and inferior parts of the cerebellum (i.e., lobules VI-VIII) seem particularly susceptible to modulation by ctDCS. Numerous studies have shown to date that ctDCS can modulate motor learning, and affect cognitive and emotional processes. Importantly, this intervention has a good safety profile; similar to when applied over cerebral areas. Thus, investigations have begun exploring ctDCS as a viable intervention for patients with neurological conditions.
- Reliability of Clinical Diagnosis of Dystonia. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Neuroepidemiology 2014 Nov 13; 43(3-4):213-219.
Background: There is only one small single-center study on the reliability of the diagnosis of focal dystonia. The aim of this study was to assess the inter-rater reliability of dystonia diagnosis among neurologists with different professional experience. Methods: Twenty-nine adults (18 with dystonia, 9 with other movement disorders, and 2 healthy controls) were videotaped while undergoing neurological examination and during the process of collecting information on the history of their condition. Each case was diagnosed by 35 blind raters (12 general neurologists, 21 neurology residents, and 2 experts in movement disorders) from different hospitals. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated confronting raters with the gold standard (the caring physician). Inter-rater agreement was measured by the Kappa statistic. Results: Specificity and sensitivity were 95.2 and 66.7%, 76.3 and 75.2%, 84.6 and 71.6% for experts, general neurologists, and residents, respectively. Kappa values on dystonia diagnosis ranged from 0.30 to 0.46. The agreement was moderate for experts and residents (0.40-0.60) and fair for general neurologists (0.20-0.40). Kappas were the highest among experts for cranial and laryngeal dystonia (0.61-1), but not for cervical dystonia (0.37). Conclusions: The diagnosis of dystonia is difficult and only partially mirrors a physician's background. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- Higher Frequency of Certain Cancers in LRRK2 G2019S Mutation Carriers With Parkinson Disease: A Pooled Analysis. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- JAMA Neurol 2014 Nov 17.
Patients with Parkinson disease (PD) who harbor LRRK2 G2019S mutations may have increased risks of nonskin cancers. However, the results have been inconsistent across studies.To analyze pooled data from 5 centers to further examine the association between LRRK2 G2019S mutation and cancer among patients with PD and to explore factors that could explain discrepancies.Clinical, demographic, and genotyping data as well as cancer outcomes were pooled from 1549 patients with PD recruited across 5 movement disorders clinics located in Europe, Israel, and the United States. Associations between LRRK2 G2019S mutation and the outcomes were examined using mixed-effects logistic regression models to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs. Models were adjusted for age and ethnicity (Ashkenazi Jewish vs others) as fixed effects and study center as a random effect.All cancers combined, nonskin cancers, smoking-related cancers, hormone-related cancers, and other types of cancer.The overall prevalence of the LRRK2 G2019S mutation was 11.4% among all patients with PD. Mutation carriers were younger at PD diagnosis and more likely to be women (53.1%) and of Ashkenazi Jewish descent (76.8%) in comparison with individuals who were not mutation carriers. The LRRK2 G2019S mutation carriers had statistically significant increased risks for nonskin cancers (OR, 1.62; 95% CI, 1.04-2.52), hormone-related cancers (OR, 1.87; 95% CI, 1.07-3.26) and breast cancer (OR, 2.34; 95% CI, 1.05-5.22) in comparison with noncarriers. There were no associations with other cancers. There were no major statistically significant differences in the results when the data were stratified by Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity; however, there was some evidence of heterogeneity across centers.This multinational study from 5 centers demonstrates that LRRK2 G2019S mutation carriers have an overall increased risk of cancer, especially for hormone-related cancer and breast cancer in women. Larger prospective cohorts or family-based studies investigating associations between LRRK2 mutations and cancer among patients with PD are warranted to better understand the underlying genetic susceptibility between PD and hormone-related cancers.
- A Wearable Proprioceptive Stabilizer (Equistasi®) for Rehabilitation of Postural Instability in Parkinson's Disease: A Phase II Randomized Double-Blind, Double-Dummy, Controlled Study. [Journal Article]
- PLoS One 2014; 9(11):e112065.
Muscle spindles endings are extremely sensitive to externally applied vibrations, and under such circumstances they convey proprioceptive inflows to the central nervous system that modulate the spinal reflexes excitability or the muscle responses elicited by postural perturbations. The aim of this pilot study is to test the feasibility and effectiveness of a balance training program in association with a wearable proprioceptive stabilizer (Equistasi) that emits focal mechanical vibrations in patients with PD.Forty patients with PD were randomly divided in two groups wearing an active or inactive device. All the patients received a 2-month intensive program of balance training. Assessments were performed at baseline, after the rehabilitation period (T1), and two more months after (T2). Posturographic measures were used as primary endpoint; secondary measures of outcome included the number of falls and several clinical scales for balance and quality of life.Both groups improved at the end of the rehabilitation period and we did not find significant between-group differences in any of the principal posturographic measures with the exception of higher sway area and limit of stability on the instrumental functional reach test during visual deprivation at T1 in the Equistasi group. As for the secondary outcome, we found an overall better outcome in patients enrolled in the Equistasi group: 1) significant improvement at T1 on Berg Balance Scale (+45.0%, p = .026), Activities-specific Balance Confidence (+83.7, p = .004), Falls Efficacy Scale (-33.3%, p = .026) and PDQ-39 (-48.8%, p = .004); 2) sustained improvement at T2 in terms of UPDRS-III, Berg Balance Scales, Time Up and Go and PDQ-39; 3) significant and sustained reduction of the falls rate.This pilot trial shows that a physiotherapy program for training balance in association with focal mechanical vibration exerted by a wearable proprioceptive stabilizer might be superior than rehabilitation alone in improving patients' balance.EudraCT 2013-003020-36 and ClinicalTrials.gov (number not assigned).
- A recurrent de novo mutation in KCNC1 causes progressive myoclonus epilepsy. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Nat Genet 2014 Nov 17.
Progressive myoclonus epilepsies (PMEs) are a group of rare, inherited disorders manifesting with action myoclonus, tonic-clonic seizures and ataxia. We sequenced the exomes of 84 unrelated individuals with PME of unknown cause and molecularly solved 26 cases (31%). Remarkably, a recurrent de novo mutation, c.959G>A (p.Arg320His), in KCNC1 was identified as a new major cause for PME. Eleven unrelated exome-sequenced (13%) and two affected individuals in a secondary cohort (7%) had this mutation. KCNC1 encodes KV3.1, a subunit of the KV3 voltage-gated potassium ion channels, which are major determinants of high-frequency neuronal firing. Functional analysis of the Arg320His mutant channel showed a dominant-negative loss-of-function effect. Ten cases had pathogenic mutations in known PME-associated genes (NEU1, NHLRC1, AFG3L2, EPM2A, CLN6 and SERPINI1). Identification of mutations in PRNP, SACS and TBC1D24 expand their phenotypic spectra to PME. These findings provide insights into the molecular genetic basis of PME and show the role of de novo mutations in this disease entity.
- Independent Validation of the SEND-PD and Correlation with the MDS-UPDRS Part IA. [Journal Article]
- Parkinsons Dis 2014.:260485.