Clinical Neuroscience

[Dopamine agonists in Parkinson’s disease therapy - 15 years of experience of the Neurological Clinics from Tîrgu Mureș. A cross-sectional study ]

SZÁSZ József Attila1,2, CONSTANTIN Viorelia2, MIHÁLY István1, BIRÓ István1, PÉTER Csongor1, ORBÁN-KIS Károly1, SZATMÁRI Szabolcs1,2

MAY 30, 2019

Clinical Neuroscience - 2019;72(05-06)


[Background and purpose - There is relatively few data regarding the usage of dopaminagonists for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease; furthermore, there are no publications regarding Central- and Eastern-European countries. The aim of the study was to evaluate the use of dopamine agonists as a therapeutic option amongst Parkinson’s disease patients admitted to the Neurological Clinics of Tîrgu Mures during the last 15 years. Methods - In our study we investigated the data of all Parkinson’s patients treated at our clinics between the 1st of January 2003 and the 31st of December 2017. We analyzed the particularities of dopamine agonists’ usage based on the therapeutic recommendations from the final report of these patients. Regarding time since the diagnosis, we divided the patients in two groups: less than or equal to 5 years and more than 5 years. Results - During the studied period a total of 2379 patients with Parkinson’s disease were treated at the Clinics. From the 1237 patients with disease duration under 5 years 665 received dopamine agonists: 120 as monotherapy, 83 together with monoamine oxidase inhibitors and in 234 cases associated with levodopa. The remaining 228 patients were treated with a triple combination of levodopa, dopamine agonists and monoamine oxidase inhibitors. In patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease for more than 5 years, in 364 cases out of 653 a dopamine agonist was part of the therapy. Conclusion - The usage of dopamine agonists was similar to the data presented in other studies. We consider that clinicians treating the disease should, with the necessary prudence, use the available and recommended dopamine agonist with the utmost courage to their maximum therapeutic potential.]


  1. 1Marosvásárhelyi Orvosi és Gyógyszerészeti Egyetem, Marosvásárhely, Románia
  2. 2. Sz. Ideggyógyászati Klinika, Maros Megyei Sürgősségi Kórház, Marosvásárhely, Románia



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

The prevalence of sarcopenia and dynapenia according to stage among Alzheimer-type dementia patients

YAZAR Tamer, YAZAR Olgun Hülya

Aim - In this study, the aim was to identify the prevalence of sarcopenia and dynapenia according to disease stage among Alzheimer-type dementia (AD) patients and collect data to suggest precautions related to reducing the disease load. Method - The study was completed with 127 patients separated into stages according to Clinical Dementia Rating Scale (CDR) criteria and 279 healthy volunteers aged 18-39 years and 70-80 years abiding by the exclusion criteria who agreed to participate in the research. Our prospective and cross-sectional study applied the CDR and mini mental test (MMSE) to patients with disorder in more than one cognitive area and possible AD diagnosis according to NINCDS-ADRDA (National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke-Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Association) diagnostic criteria. The patient and control groups had skeletal muscle mass index (SMMI), muscle strength and physical performance assessed with sarcopenia diagnosis according to European Working Group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP) diagnostic criteria. Results - In our study, in parallel with the increase in disease stage of AD patients, the prevalence of sarcopenia (led by severe sarcopenia) and dynapenia was higher compared to a control group of similar age. Conclusion - In chronic, progressive diseases, like AD, identification of changes in parameters, like muscle mass and strength and reductions in physical performance in the early period, is important for identification and to take precautions in the initial stages considering the limitations of the preventive effects of treatment applied after diagnosis of AD.

Clinical Neuroscience

[F-DOPA PET/MR based target definiton in the 3D based radiotherapy treatment of glioblastoma multiforme patients. First Hungarian experiences ]

SIPOS Dávid, TÓTH Zoltán, LUKÁCS Gábor, BAJZIK Gábor, HADJIEV Janaki, CSELIK Zsolt, REPA Imre, KOVÁCS Árpád

[Introduction - Radiotherapy plays important role in the complex oncological treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The modern 3D radiotherapy treatments are based on cross-sectional CT and MR information, however more attention is being paid to functional hybrid imaging describing the biological and functional morphology of tumor lesions. 18F-DOPA is an amino acid tracer with high specificity and sensitivity, which may play an important role in the precise definition of target volume in the irradiation process of GBM patients. Our study presents the first experiences with 18F-DOPA based PET/CT/MR 3D irradiation planning process. Methods - In Hungary the 18F-DOPA radiotracer has been available for clinical use since September 2017. Between September 2017 and January 2018, at the Somogy County Kaposi Mór Teaching Hospital Dr. József Baka Diagnostic, Radiation Oncology, Research and Teaching Center 3 histologically verified glioblastoma multiforme patients received 18F-DOPA based 3D irradiation treatment. In the contouring process the native planning CT scanes were fused with the PET/MR series (T1 contrast enhanced, T2 and 18F-DOPA sequences). We defined 18F-DOPA uptake volume (BTV-F-DOPA), the T1 contrast enhanced MRI volume (GTV-T1CE), and the volume of the area covered by oedema on the T2 weighted MRI scan (CTV-oedema) in all patients. We also registered the BTV-F-DOPA volumes not covered by the conventional MR based target volumes. Results - Examining the 3 cases, the average volume of 18F-DOPA tumor was 22.7 cm3 (range 15.3-30.9; SD = 7.82). The average GTV T1 CE was found to be 8.7 cm3 (range 3.8-13.2; SD = 4.70). The mean CTV oedema volume was 40.3 cm3 (range 27.7-57.7; SD = 15.36). A non-overlapping target volume difference (BTV-F-DOPA not covered by CTV oedema area) was 4.5 cm3 (range 1-10.3; SD = 5.05) for PTV definition. Conclusion - Based on our results the tumor area defined by the amino acid tracer is not fully identical with the MRI defined T2 oedema CTV. 18F-DOPA defined BTV can modify the definiton of the PTV, and the radiotherapy treatment. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

Mid-term oral isotretinoin therapy causes a predominantly sensory demyelinating neuropathy

ALTUN Yasar, INAN Esra

Aim - The purpose of this prospective study was to investigate whether mid-term treatment with oral isotretinoin may impact peripheral nerve function. Methods - In this study, we included 28 patients with no apparent neurological or neurophysiological findings. The patients received treatment with oral isotretinoin for papulopustular or nodulocystic acne. The patients with normal findings in the first examination were given 1 mg/kg/day oral isotretinoin. Neurological examinations and electroneurographic studies were performed before and 6 months after the onset of isotretinoin treatment. Results - Clinical examinations and electroneurographic evaluations prior to treatment revealed no abnormalities in any of the patients. However, 20 patients (72%) displayed one or more abnormal values in the tested parameters after treatment. Although the mean amplitudes of compound muscle action potential of the ulnar and median nerves did not vary, significant decreases were observed in the mean sensory conduction velocities of median, ulnar, sural, medial plantar, medial dorsal cutaneous, and dorsal sural nerves 6 months after the onset of treatment. Conclusion - Systemic use of isotretinoin may cause electroneurographic changes. Probable electroneurographic alterations may be detected at a much earlier period via dorsal sural nerve tracing when electrophysiological methods used in routine clinical practice cannot detect these changes.

Clinical Neuroscience

[The effect of bevacizumab monotherapy on progression free survival in recurrent glioblastoma]


[Introduction, the aim of study - Glioblastoma, WHO grade IV is the most frequent primary malignant brain tumor in adults. There are few articles and result about the efficacy of bevacizumab monotherapy. The aim of our paper is to examine the effect of bevacizumab therapy on progression free and overall survival in an extended database of recurrent glioblastoma patients. Patients and methods - In our retrospective study, patients with recurrent glioblastoma treated with bevacizumab had been collected. All of our patients received first line chemo-irradiation according the Stupp protocol treatment. The histological diagnosis was primary or secondary glioblastoma in every patient. The prognostic features of primary and secondary glioblastomas were statistically analyzed. Results - Eighty-six patients were selected into the retrospective analysis. The histological diagnosis was primary glioblastoma in 65 patients (75.6%) and secondary glioblastoma in 21 patients (24.4%). The mean follow up period was 36.5 months. The mean second progression free survival beside bevacizumab therapy was 6.59 months and the mean overall survival was 24.55 months. In secunder glioblastoma cases, the mean second progression free survival was 6.16 months and the mean overall survival was 91.94 months. Conclusion - The bevacizumab therapy is a safe option in recurrent glioblastoma patients. Bevacizumab therapy has a positive effect both on progression free and overall survival and our results confirm the findings in the literature. There is no statistically significant difference in the second progression free survival between glioblastoma subtypes.]

Clinical Neuroscience

The methylation status of NKCC1 and KCC2 in the patients with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy

UNAL Yasemin, KARA Murat, GENC Fatma, OZTURK Aslan Dilek, GÖMCELI Bicer Yasemin, KAYNAR Taner, TOSUN Kursad, KUTLU Gülnihal

Purpose - Methylation is a key epigenetic modification of DNA and regarding its impact on epilepsy, it is argued that “DNA methylation may play an important role in seizure susceptibility and maintenance of the disorder”. DNA methylation status of KCC2 (SCL12A5) and NKCC1 (SCL12A2) associated with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy was investigated in our study. Materials and methods - Thirty-eight patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) who were diagnosed by video EEG monitoring and 32 healthy control subjects were included in the study. Twenty-three patients in TLE group were men and the remaining 15 were women. Among them, 27 had unilateral temporal focus (9 with right; 18 with left) and 11 patients had bilateral TLE. We analyzed promoter region methylation status of the KCC2 (SCL12A5) and NKCC1 (SCL12A2) genes in the case and control groups. Gene regions of interest were amplified through PCR and sequencing was accomplished with pyro-sequencing. Results - We found a significant relationship between TLE and methylation on the NKCC1. However, there was no association between TLE and methylation on the KCC2 gene. Also, we found no association between right or left and unilateral or bilateral foci of TLE. There was no relationship between TLE and methylation on the NKCC1and KCC2 genes in terms of mesial temporal sclerosis in cranial MRI, head trauma or febrile convulsions. Conclusion - The methylation of NKCC1 can be a mecha­nism of refractory temporal lobe epilepsy. There are limited findings about DNA methylation in TLE. Therefore, further studies with large sample sizes are necessary.

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Comparison of pramipexole versus ropinirole in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease

GENCLER Onur Serdar , OZTEKIN Nese , OZTEKIN Fevzi Mehmet

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by motor and non-motor symptoms. Levodopa is the most effective drug in the symptomatic treatment of the disease. Dopamine receptor agonists provide sustained dopamin-ergic stimulation and have been found to delay the initiation of levodopa treatment and reduce the frequency of various motor complications due to the long-term use of levodopa. The primary aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of potent nonergoline dopamine agonists pramipexole and ropinirole in both “dopamine agonist monotherapy group” and “levodopa add-on therapy group” in Parkinson’s disease. The secondary aims were to evaluate the effects of these agents on depression and the safety of pramipexole and ropinirole. A total of 44 patients aged between 36 and 80 years who were presented to the neurology clinic at Ministry of Health Diskapi Yildirim Beyazit Training and Research Hospital, Ankara, Turkey and were diagnosed with idiopathic Parkinson’s disease, were included into this randomized parallel-group clinical study. Dopamine agonist monotherapy and levodopa add-on therapy patients were randomized into two groups to receive either pramipexole or ropinirole. The maximum daily dosages of pramipexole and ropinirole were 4.5 mg and 24 mg respectively. Patients were followed for 6 months and changes on Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale, Clinical Global Impression-severity of illness, Clinical Global Impression-improvement, Beck Depression Inven­tory scores, and additionally in advanced stages, changes in levodopa dosages were evaluated. Drug associated side effects were noted and compared. In dopamine agonist monotherapy group all of the subsections and total scores of Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale and Clinical Global Impression-severity of illness of the pramipexole subgroup showed significant improvement particularly at the end of the sixth month. In the pramipexole subgroup of levodopa add-on therapy group, there were significant improvements on Clinical Global Impression-severity of illness and Beck Depression Inventory scores, but we found significant improvement on Clinical Global Impression-severity of illness score at the end of the sixth month in ropinirole subgroup too. The efficacy of pramipexole and ropinirole as antiparkinsonian drugs for monotherapy and levodopa add-on therapy in Parkinson’s disease and their effects on motor complications when used with levodopa treatment for add-on therapy have been demonstrated in several previous studies. This study supports the effectiveness and safety of pramipexole and ropinirole in the monotherapy and levodopa add-on therapy in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

Clinical Neuroscience

Uric acid: The role in the pathophysiology and the prediction in the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease: A Turkish-based study

ARI Cagla Buse , TUR Kobak Esma , DOMAC Mayda Fusun , KENANGIL Ozgen Gulay

Oxidative stress has been associated as an essential contributor to the development of neurodegenerative diseases. Recent developments in the field of Parkinson’s Disease (PD) pathophysiology have led to a renewed interest in this field. As an antioxidant, uric acid (UA) has arisen as a potential neuroprotectant. Higher concentrations of UA are linked to reducing the risk of the development of the disease and preventing its progression. However, the expositions are unsatisfactory because the outcomes of these reports have not been consistent. This study is set out to assess the association of whether lower UA concentrations increased the PD risk by investigating its relationship with patients’ demographic and clinical data, and to determine whether previous studies are compatible with the Turkish-sampled population. Furthermore, we aimed to determine UA’s probability of being an early-stage diagnostic marker. A total of 305 patients and 100 healthy controls were included. Serum UA levels of patients and controls were compared with clinical features. We classified the patients into three motor subtypes and determined the disease severity by modified Hoehn&Yahr Staging Scale (mH&Y) and Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). Standardized Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE-TR) was assessed for cognition. There were not any significant differences of age and sex between patients and controls (p=0.030, p=0.132). The mean UA was 5.06±1.33 mg/dL in patients and 5.46±1.44 in controls, and a statistical significance was detected (p=0.022). The mean MMSE-TR were 24.83±4.35 in patients and 27.09±2.13 in controls, and statictical significance was revealed (p=0.001). The mean duration of the disease was 6.31±4.16 years, mean UPDRS scores were 59.74±22.33, and mH&Y scores were 2.29±0.91. In binary comparisons, patients with tremor-dominant motor subtype had lower UA concentrations than controls (p=0.014). ROC curve analysis revealed UA’s cut-off as ≤9.15, the specificity was 99.3, the sensitivity was 10.0, and the area under the curve was 0.576 (p<0.005). Regression analysis revealed age as an independent risk factor on UA values. Oxidative stress might be a factor in the development of PD, and UA may be a possible prospective protecting factor in the clinical course of the disease. However, it does not affect the severity. Our results support that lower uric acid concentrations are associated with PD; however, it is not a powerful indicator for predicting PD risk. As we reveal more about UA and its effect in further investigations, its significant role will become well-defined.

Clinical Neuroscience

Retinal morphological changes during the two years of follow-up in Parkinson’s disease

ATUM Mahmut, DEMIRYÜREK Enes Bekir

The study aims to investigate the relationship between the progression of idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD) and retinal morphology. The study was carried out with 23 patients diagnosed with early-stage IPD (phases 1 and 2 of the Hoehn and Yahr scale) and 30 age-matched healthy controls. All patients were followed up at least two years, with 6-month intervals (initial, 6th month, 12th month, 18th month, and 24th month), and detailed neurological and ophthalmic examinations were performed at each follow-up. Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale part III (UPDRS Part III) scores, Hoehn and Yahr (H&Y) scores, best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), intraocular pressure (IOP) measurement, central macular thickness (CMT) and retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness were analyzed at each visit. The average age of the IPD and control groups was 43.96 ± 4.88 years, 44.53 ± 0.83 years, respectively. The mean duration of the disease in the IPD group was 7.48 ± 5.10 months at the start of the study (range 0-16). There was no statistically significant difference in BCVA and IOP values between the two groups during the two-year follow-up period (p> 0.05, p> 0.05, respectively). Average and superior quadrant RNFL thicknesses were statistically different between the two groups at 24 months and there was no significant difference between other visits (p=0.025, p=0.034, p> 0.05, respectively). There was no statistically significant difference in CMT between the two groups during the follow-up period (p> 0.05). Average and superior quadrant RNFL thicknesses were significantly thinning with the progression of IPD.

Lege Artis Medicinae

[COVID-19 and Parkinson’s disease]

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[Parkinson’s disease is the elderly people’s condition which increases the risk of infections in the upper airways in its ad­vanced stages. Specific diseases (as hypertension, diabetes mellitus), older age and the male sex are significantly worsening the course of COVID-19. It would be challenging to examine parallel these diseases, since they are raising two important ques­tions. First, if Parkinson’s disease be a risk factor of COVID-19 morbidity and mortality. Se­condly, how the COVID-19 pandemic can influence the Parkinson’s disease patients. The authors are seeking answers to these questions based on the published results in the topic concerned.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[The applicability of 123I-FP-CIT SPECT dopamine transporter imaging in clinical practice]

PERLAKI Gábor, SZEKERES Sarolta, JANSZKY József, DEZSŐ Dániel, ASCHERMANN Zsuzsanna, ZÁMBÓ Katalin, KOVÁCS Norbert

[The 123I-FP-CIT dopamine transporter SPECT imaging is a sensitive method to assess functional dopaminergic neuron terminals in the striatum. The method has also been available in Hungary for years. There are two main indications: (i) to help differentiate essential tremor from clinically uncertain Parkinsonism, including patients with early symptoms and (ii) to help differentiate dementia with Lewy bodies from Alzheimer’s disease. The aim of this paper is to review 123I-FP-CIT SPECT imaging based on international data/guidelines and our own experiences, thereby assisting nuclear medicine practitioners and neurologists.]