Motor and Non-motor Features: Differences between Patients with Isolated Essential Tremor and Patients with Both Essential Tremor and Parkinson’s Disease

Ghika, Apostolia; Kyrozis, Andreas; Potagas, Constantinos; Louis, Elan D.

Background: Patients with essential tremor (ET) who develop Parkinson’s disease (ET->PD) may differ with respect to motor features (MFs) and non-motor features (NMFs) from patients with isolated ET. Few studies have assessed this issue.

Methods: In this retrospective chart review, we analyzed data on MFs and NMFs of 175 patients, including 54 ET->PD and 121 ET, actively followed in the Athens University 1st Neurology Department.

Results: Significantly more ET->PD than ET patients reported asymmetric tremor at ET onset (68.5% vs. 14.9%, p<0.001). Significantly more ET than ET->PD patients had head tremor (43.5% vs. 13.2%, p<0.001) and cerebellar signs (41.3% vs. 9.3%, p<0.001). More ET than ET->PD patients reported hearing impairment (65.3% vs. 28.3%, p<0.001) and restless legs syndrome (34.8% vs. 3.7%, p<0.001). Conversely, a larger proportion of ET->PD than ET patients reported rapid eye movement behavior disorder (51.9% vs. 10.0%, p<0.001), constipation (67.9% vs. 36.4%, p<0.001), and olfactory dysfunction (83.3% vs. 36.4%, p<0.001).

Discussion: The subset of ET->PD patients may have distinct MFs and NMFs that should be assessed further for the possible predictive value for the emergence of PD.


Also Published In

Tremor and Other Hyperkinetic Movements

More About This Work

Academic Units
Center for Parkinson's Disease and Other Movement Disorders
Published Here
October 15, 2015