Cognitive performance and neuropsychiatric symptoms in early, untreated Parkinson's disease

Daniel Weintraub*, Tanya Simuni, Chelsea Caspell-Garcia, Christopher Coffey, Shirley Lasch, Andrew Siderowf, Dag Aarsland, Paolo Barone, David Burn, Lama M. Chahine, Jamie Eberling, Alberto J. Espay, Eric D. Foster, James B. Leverenz, Irene Litvan, Irene Richard, Matthew D. Troyer, Keith A. Hawkins, Kenneth Marek, Danna JenningsCaroline Tanner, Karl Kieburtz, Werner Poewe, Brit Mollenhauer, Tatiana Foroud, Douglas Galasko, Todd Sherer, Sohini Chowdhury, Mark Frasier, Catherine Kopil, Vanessa Arnedo, Alice Rudolph, John Seibyl, Susan Mendick, Norbert Schuff, Chelsea Caspell, Liz Uribe, Eric Foster, Katherine Gloer, Jon Yankey, Arthur Toga, Dorit Berlin, Paola Casalin, Giulia Malferrari, John Trojanowski, Les Shaw, David Russell, Stewart Factor, Penelope Hogarth, David Standaert, Robert Hauser, Joseph Jankovic, Matthew Stern, Lama Chahine, Samuel Frank, Klaus Seppi, Holly Shill, Daniela Berg, Zoltan Mari, Nicola Pavese, Alberto Espay, Johnna Devoto, Dominic Rowe, Melanie Brandabur, Roy Alcalay, Eduardo Tolosa, Michele York, Laura Leary, Cheryl Riordan, Linda Rees, Alicia Portillo, Art Lenahan, Karen Williams, Stephanie Guthrie, Ashlee Rawlins, Sherry Harlan, Christine Hunter, Baochan Tran, Cathi Ann Thomas, Raymond James, Fabienne Sprenger, Diana Willeke, Sanja Obradov, Jennifer Mule, Katharina Gauss, Deborah Fontaine, Bina Shah, Madelaine Ranola, John R. Sims, Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    208 Citations (Scopus)


    This study was undertaken to determine the prevalence and correlates of cognitive impairment (CI) and neuropsychiatric symptoms (NPS) in early, untreated patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Background: Both CI and NPS are common in PD and impact disease course and quality of life. However, limited knowledge is available about cognitive abilities and NPS. Methods: Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) is a multi-site study of early, untreated PD patients and healthy controls (HCs), the latter with normal cognition. At baseline, participants were assessed with a neuropsychological battery and for symptoms of depression, anxiety, impulse control disorders (ICDs), psychosis, and apathy. Results: Baseline data of 423 PD patients and 196 HCs yielded no between-group differences in demographic characteristics. Twenty-two percent of PD patients met the PD-recommended screening cutoff for CI on the Montral Cognitive Assessment (MoCA), but only 9% met detailed neuropsychological testing criteria for mild cognitive impairment (MCI)-level impairment. The PD patients were more depressed than HCs (P<0.001), with twice as many (14% vs. 7%) meeting criteria for clinically significant depressive symptoms. The PD patients also experienced more anxiety (P<0.001) and apathy (P<0.001) than HCs. Psychosis was uncommon in PD (3%), and no between-group difference was seen in ICD symptoms (P=0.51). Conclusions: Approximately 10% of PD patients in the early, untreated disease state met traditional criteria of CI, which is a lower frequency compared with previous studies. Multiple dopaminergic-dependent NPS are also more common in these patients compared with the general population, but others associated with dopamine replacement therapy are not or are rare. Future analyses of this cohort will examine biological predictors and the course of CI and NPS.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)919-927
    Number of pages9
    JournalMovement disorders : official journal of the Movement Disorder Society
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015


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