Despite a paucity of controlled data, stereotactic pallidotomy is increasingly used for the treatment of advanced Parkinson's disease (PD). To study the efficacy of the procedure on the cardinal PD features of rigidity, tremor, bradykinesia, and postural instability, we blindly rated randomized videos of 34 patients recorded in the 'off' state immediately before and 3 months after unilateral stereotactic lesioning of the globus pallidus internus. Total 'off' time Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale motor scores improved 13.6% from 28.9 ± 7.5 to 25.0 ± 7.0 (p < 0.001). Particularly robust improvement was seen in contralateral tremor, gait, and arising from a chair (p < 0.001). Significant improvement was also seen in ipsilateral tremor, contralateral and some ipsilateral dexterity measures, and body bradykinesia. Most other features tended toward improvement but did not reach statistical significance. We conclude that pallidotomy is a safe and effective treatment of parkinsonian symptoms, many of which improve bilaterally.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology