A comparison of the progression of early Parkinson's disease in patients started on ropinirole or L-dopa: An 18F-dopa PET study

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  • J. S. Rakshi, Hammersmith Hospital, UCL
  • ,
  • N. Pavese
  • T. Uema, Hammersmith Hospital
  • ,
  • K. Ito, Hammersmith Hospital
  • ,
  • P. K. Morrish, Hammersmith Hospital
  • ,
  • D. L. Bailey, Hammersmith Hospital
  • ,
  • D. J. Brooks

Objective: To study the relative rates of progression of early Parkinson's disease (PD) in patients started on a dopamine agonist, ropinirole, or L-dopa. Methods: A double-blind study of 45 early PD patients [mean age 61 ± 9.8 SD and mean symptom duration, 26 ± 16 SD months] randomized 2:1 (ropinirole: L-dopa). Supplementary L-dopa was allowed if, during the trial, there was lack of a therapeutic effect. 18F-dopa PET scans were performed at baseline (n = 45) and 2 years (n = 37). Results: At two years, the mean percentage reduction in putamen 18F-dopa uptake Kio was not significantly different between the two groups (13% ropinirole, n = 28 versus 18% L-dopa, n = 9). Conclusions: We found no significant overall difference in underlying PD progression, after two years treatment, between patients groups. In summary, 18F-dopa PET can be employed to objectively evaluate the effect of potential neuroprotective agents on dopaminergic function.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Neural Transmission
Pages (from-to)1433-1443
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2002
Externally publishedYes

    Research areas

  • F-dopa PET, L-dopa toxicity, Neuroprotection, Parkinson's disease progression, Ropinirole

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