Clinical Neuroscience

[Advanced Parkinson’s disease characteristics in clinical practice: Results from the OBSERVE-PD study and sub-analysis of the Hungarian data]

TAKÁTS Annamária1, ASCHERMANN Zsuzsanna2, VÉCSEI László3,4, KLIVÉNYI Péter3, DÉZSI Lívia3, ZÁDORI Dénes3, VALIKOVICS Attila5, VARANNAI Lajos5, ONUK Koray6, KINCZEL Beatrix7, KOVÁCS Norbert2

JULY 30, 2020

Clinical Neuroscience - 2020;73(07-08)


[The majority of patients with advanced Parkinson’s disease are treated at specialized movement disorder centers. Currently, there is no clear consensus on how to define the stages of Parkinson’s disease; the proportion of Parkinson’s patients with advanced Parkinson’s disease, the referral process, and the clinical features used to characterize advanced Parkinson’s disease are not well delineated. The primary objective of this observational study was to evaluate the proportion of Parkinson’s patients identified as advanced patients according to physician’s judgment in all participating movement disorder centers across the study. Here we evaluate the Hungarian subset of the participating patients. The study was conducted in a cross-sectional, non-interventional, multi-country, multi-center format in 18 countries. Data were collected during a single patient visit. Current Parkinson’s disease status was assessed with Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) parts II, III, IV, and V (modified Hoehn and Yahr staging). Non-motor symptoms were assessed using the PD Non-motor Symptoms Scale (NMSS); quality of life was assessed with the PD 8-item Quality-of-Life Questionnaire (PDQ-8). Parkinson’s disease was classified as advanced versus non-advanced based on physician assessment and on questions developed by the Delphi method. Overall, 2627 patients with Parkinson’s disease from 126 sites were documented. In Hungary, 100 patients with Parkinson’s disease were documented in four movement disorder centers, and, according to the physician assessment, 50% of these patients had advanced Parkinson’s disease. Their mean scores showed significantly higher impairment in those with, versus without advanced Parkinson’s disease: UPDRS II (14.1 vs. 9.2), UPDRS IV Q32 (1.1 vs. 0.0) and Q39 (1.1 vs. 0.5), UPDRS V (2.8 vs. 2.0) and PDQ-8 (29.1 vs. 18.9). Physicians in Hungarian movement disorder centers assessed that half of the Parkinson’s patients had advanced disease, with worse motor and non-motor symptom severity and worse QoL than those without advanced Parkinson’s disease. Despite being classified as eligible for invasive/device-aided treatment, that treatment had not been initiated in 25% of these patients.]


  1. Semmelweis Egyetem, Általános Orvostudományi Kar, Neurológiai Klinika, Budapest
  2. Pécsi Tudományegyetem, Általános Orvostudományi Kar, Neurológiai Klinika, Pécs
  3. Szegedi Tudományegyetem, Általános Orvostudományi Kar, Neurológiai Klinika, Szeged
  4. MTA-SZTE Idegtudományi Kutatócsoport, Szeged
  5. BAZ Megyei Központi Kórház és Egyetemi Oktatókórház, Stroke, Vascularis és Általános Neurológiai és Toxikológiai Osztály, Miskolc
  6. AbbVie Inc., North Chicago, IL, USA
  7. AbbVie Kft., Budapest, Magyarország



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

[What happens to vertiginous population after emission from the Emergency Department?]

MAIHOUB Stefani, MOLNÁR András, CSIKÓS András, KANIZSAI Péter, TAMÁS László, SZIRMAI Ágnes

[Background – Dizziness is one of the most frequent complaints when a patient is searching for medical care and resolution. This can be a problematic presentation in the emergency department, both from a diagnostic and a management standpoint. Purpose – The aim of our study is to clarify what happens to patients after leaving the emergency department. Methods – 879 patients were examined at the Semmel­weis University Emergency Department with vertigo and dizziness. We sent a questionnaire to these patients and we had 308 completed papers back (110 male, 198 female patients, mean age 61.8 ± 12.31 SD), which we further analyzed. Results – Based on the emergency department diagnosis we had the following results: central vestibular lesion (n = 71), dizziness or giddiness (n = 64) and BPPV (n = 51) were among the most frequent diagnosis. Clarification of the final post-examination diagnosis took several days (28.8%), and weeks (24.2%). It was also noticed that 24.02% of this population never received a proper diagnosis. Among the population only 80 patients (25.8%) got proper diagnosis of their complaints, which was supported by qualitative statistical analysis (Cohen Kappa test) result (κ = 0.560). Discussion – The correlation between our emergency department diagnosis and final diagnosis given to patients is low, a phenomenon that is also observable in other countries. Therefore, patient follow-up is an important issue, including the importance of neurotology and possibly neurological examination. Conclusion – Emergency diagnosis of vertigo is a great challenge, but despite of difficulties the targeted and quick case history and exact examination can evaluate the central or peripheral cause of the balance disorder. Therefore, to prevent declination of the quality of life the importance of further investigation is high.]

Clinical Neuroscience

Life threatening rare lymphomas presenting as longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis: a diagnostic challenge

TOLVAJ Balázs, HAHN Katalin, NAGY Zsuzsanna, VADVÁRI Árpád, CSOMOR Judit, GELPI Ellen, ILLÉS Zsolt, GARZULY Ferenc

Background and aims – Description of two cases of rare intravascular large B-cell lymphoma and secondary T-cell lymphoma diagnosed postmortem, that manifested clinically as longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis (LETM). We discuss causes of diagnostic difficulties, deceptive radiological and histological investigations, and outline diagnostic procedures based on our and previously reported cases. Case reports – Our first case, a 48-year-old female was admitted to the neurological department due to paraparesis. MRI suggested LETM, but the treatments were ineffective. She died after four weeks because of pneumonia and untreatable polyserositis. Pathological examination revealed intravascular large B-cell lymphoma (IVL). Our second case, a 61-year-old man presented with headache and paraparesis. MRI showed small bitemporal lesions and lesions suggesting LETM. Diagnostic investigations were unsuccessful, including tests for possible lymphoma (CSF flow cytometry and muscle biopsy for suspected IVL). Chest CT showed focal inflammation in a small area of the lung, and adrenal adenoma. Brain biopsy sample from the affected temporal area suggested T-cell mediated lymphocytic (paraneoplastic or viral) meningoencephalitis and excluded diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. The symptoms worsened, and the patient died in the sixth week of disease. The pathological examination of the presumed adenoma in the adrenal gland, the pancreatic tail and the lung lesions revealed peripheral T-cell lymphoma, as did the brain and spinal cord lesions. Even at histological examination, the T-cell lymphoma had the misleading appearance of inflammatory condition as did the MRI. Conclusion – Lymphoma can manifest as LETM. In cases of etiologically unclear atypical LETM in patients older than 40 years, a random skin biopsy (with subcutaneous adipose tissue) from the thigh and from the abdomen is strongly recommended as soon as possible. This may detect IVL and provide the possibility of prompt chemotherapy. In case of suspicion of lymphoma, parallel examination of the CSF by flow cytometry is also recommended. If skin biopsy is negative but lymphoma suspicion remains high, biopsy from other sites (bone marrow, lymph nodes or adrenal gland lesion) or from a simultaneously existing cerebral lesion is suggested, to exclude or prove diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, IVL, or a rare T-cell lymphoma.

Clinical Neuroscience

Extraskeletal, intradural, non-metastatic Ewing’s sarcoma. Case report


Intracranial localization of Ewing’s sarcoma is considerably very rare. Herein, we present clinical and neuroimaging findings regarding a 4-year-old boy with intracranial Ewing’s sarcoma. He was born prematurely, suffered intraventricular haemorrhage, posthaemorrhagic hydrocephalus developed, and a ventriculoperitoneal shunt was inserted in the newborn period. The patient endured re­gular follow ups, no signs of shunt malfunction nor increased intracranial pressure were observed. The last neuroima­ging examination was performed at 8 months of age. Upon reaching the age of 4 years, repeated vomiting and focal seizures began, and symptoms of increased intracranial pressure were detected. A brain MRI depicted a left frontoparietal space-occupying lesion infiltrating the superior sagittal sinus. The patient underwent a craniotomy resulting in the total excision of the tumour. The histological examination of the tissue revealed a small round blue cell tumour. The diagnosis was confirmed by the detection of EWSR1 gene translocation with FISH (fluorescent in situ hybridization). No additional metastases were detected during the staging examinations. The patient was treated in accordance to the EuroEwing 99 protocol. Today, ten years onward, the patient is tumour and seizure free and has a reasonably high quality of life.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Decisional collisions between evidence and experience based medicine in care of people with epilepsy]


[Background – Based on the literature and his long-term clinical practice the author stresses the main collisions of evidence and experience based medicine in the care of people with epilepsy. Purpose – To see, what are the professional decisions of high responsibility in the epilepsy-care, in whose the relevant clinical research is still lacking or does not give a satisfactory basis. Methods – Following the structure of the Hungarian Guideline the author points the critical situations and decisions. He explains also the causes of the dilemmas: the lack or uncertainty of evidences or the difficulty of scientific investigation of the situation. Results – There are some priorities of experience based medicine in the following areas: definition of epilepsy, classification of seizures, etiology – including genetic background –, role of precipitating and provoking factors. These are able to influence the complex diagnosis. In the pharmacotherapy the choice of the first drug and the optimal algorithm as well as the tasks during the care are also depends on personal experiences sometimes contradictory to the official recommendations. Same can occur in the choice of the non-pharmacological treatments and rehabilitation. Discussion and conclusion – Personal professional experiences (and interests of patients) must be obligatory accessories of evidence based attitude, but for achieving the optimal results, in some situations they replace the official recommendations. Therefore it is very important that the problematic patients do meet experts having necessary experiences and also professional responsibility to help in these decisions. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Comparative analysis of the full and shortened versions of the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory]

ÁDÁM Szilvia, DOMBRÁDI Viktor, MÉSZÁROS Veronika, BÁNYAI Gábor, NISTOR Anikó, BÍRÓ Klára

[Background – The two free-to-use versions of the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory (OLBI) have been increasingly utilised to assess the prevalence of burnout among human service workers. The OLBI has been developed to overcome some of the psychometric and conceptual limitations of the Maslach Burnout Inventory, the gold standard of burnout measures. There is a lack of data on the structural validity of the Mini Oldenburg Burnout Inventory and the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory in Hungary. Purpose – To assess the structural validity of the Hungarian versions of the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory and the Mini-Oldenburg Burnout Inventory. Methods – We enrolled 564 participants (196 healthcare workers, 104 nurses and 264 clinicians) in three cross-sectional surveys. In our analysis we assessed the construct validity of the instruments using confirmatory factor analysis and internal consistency using coefficient Cronbach’s α. Results – We confirmed the two-dimensional structure (exhaustion and disengagement) of the Mini-Oldenburg Inventory and a shortened version of the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory Internal consistency coefficient confirmed the reliability of the instruments. The burnout appeared more than a 50 percent of the participants in every subsample. The prevalence of exhaustion was above 54.5% in each of the subsamples and the proportion of disengaged clinicians was particularly high (92%). Conclusions – Our findings provide support for the construct validity and reliability of the Hungarian versions of the Mini-Oldenburg Burnout Inventory and a shortened version of the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory in the assessment of burnout among clinicians and nurses in Hungary.]

All articles in the issue

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Clinical Neuroscience

[Hungarian experiences with levodopa/carbidopa intestinal gel in the treatment of advanced Parkinson’s disease]

NAGY Helga, TAKÁTS Annamária, TÓTH Adrián, BERECZKI Dániel, KLIVÉNYI Péter, DÉZSI Lívia, DIBÓ György, VÉCSEI László, KOVÁCS Norbert, ASCHERMANN Zsuzsa, KOMOLY Sámuel, VARANNAI Lajos, ZEMLÉNYI Gyöngyi

[In the advanced Parkison’s disease (PD) the late complications of levodopa therapy have to be considered: motor and/or non-motor fluctuations with or without disturbing dyskinesias. The non-motor fluctuations often influence the quality of life (QoL) in a much more negative way compared with the motor symptoms. In the treatment of advanced PD there are several device-aided methods - deep brain stimulation, apomorphine pump, levodopa/carbidopa intestinal gel (LCIG ) - to improve the symptoms, the QoL, sometimes even in an individual, tailored custom form. The LCIG therapy was introduced in Hungary in 2011. Here we summarize the data of our patients: we have tested almost 60 patients and in 43 cases we have started this treatment. We analyze the duration of illness, levodopa therapy, motor and non-motor fluctuation of patients and present our experiences with the test phase and the chronic LCIG therapy via PEG/PEJ implantation. We paid attention to the surgery and device - depending side effects. Our experiences are similar to the international data. In patients selection „the right treatment, to the right patient, in the right time” is of importance.]

Clinical Neuroscience

Alexithymia is associated with cognitive impairment in patients with Parkinson’s disease

SENGUL Yildizhan, KOCAK Müge, CORAKCI Zeynep, SENGUL Serdar Hakan, USTUN Ismet

Cognitive dysfunction (CD) is a common non-motor symptom of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Alexithy­mia is a still poorly understood neuropsychiatric feature of PD. Cognitive impairment (especially visuospatial dysfunction and executive dysfunction) and alexithymia share com­mon pathology of neuroanatomical structures. We hypo­thesized that there must be a correlation between CD and alexithymia levels considering this relationship of neuroanatomy. Objective – The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between alexithymia and neurocognitive function in patients with PD. Thirty-five patients with PD were included in this study. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale–20 (TAS-20), Geriatric Depression Inventory (GDI) and a detailed neuropsychological evaluation were performed. Higher TAS-20 scores were negatively correlated with Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) similarities test score (r =-0.71, p value 0.02), clock drawing test (CDT) scores (r=-0.72, p=0.02) and verbal fluency (VF) (r=-0.77, p<0.01). Difficulty identifying feelings subscale score was negatively correlated with CDT scores (r=-0.74, p=0.02), VF scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04), visual memory immediate recall (r=-0.74, p=0.01). VF scores were also correlated with difficulty describing feelings (DDF) scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04). There was a reverse relationship bet­ween WAIS similarities and DDF scores (r=-0.70, p=0.02), and externally oriented-thinking (r=-0.77,p<0.01). Executive function Z score was correlated with the mean TAS-20 score (r=-62, p=0.03) and DDF subscale score (r=-0.70, p=0.01) Alexithymia was found to be associated with poorer performance on visuospatial and executive function test results. We also found that alexithymia was significantly correlated with depressive symptoms. Presence of alexithymia should therefore warn the clinicians for co-existing CD.

Lege Artis Medicinae

[The author’s response to the comment on “Exploratory study of outcomes of blood sample mass examinations by rank correlations”]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Comment to the article titled “Exploratory study of outcomes of blood sample mass examinations by rank correlations”]