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  • Print publication year: 2006
  • Online publication date: August 2010

35 - Parkinson's disease and other movement disorders

from Section C - Disease-specific neurorehabilitation systems


Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized neuropathologically by Lewy body type neuronal degeneration in the pars compacta of the substantia nigra resulting in dopamine deficiency in nigrostriatal projection areas. Autosomal-recessive Parkinsonism associated with the Parkin mutations is characterized by early onset with dystonia, slow progression and L-dopa responsiveness for prolonged time periods. The diagnosis of PD is made on the basis of patient history and clinical signs. Rehabilitative therapy in PD intends to provide physical and psychosocial aid that helps to secure quality of life and to reduce the characteristic complications of long-term disease. One rationale behind implementing cues in the rehabilitation of patients with PD is to substitute defective signaling between basal ganglia and supplementary motor area (SMA). Basal ganglia dysfunction in idiopathic dystonia has been confirmed by simultaneous electromyography (EMG) and deep brain recordings demonstrating disturbed basal ganglia activation related to dystonic movements.

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