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Clin Neuropharmacol. 2008 May-Jun;31(3):127-33. doi: 10.1097/WNF.0b013e3180ca77ea.

A study of chorea after tetrabenazine withdrawal in patients with Huntington disease.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA.



To assess tetrabenazine (TBZ) efficacy by evaluating the change in Huntington disease-associated chorea resulting from TBZ treatment withdrawal.


Thirty patients treated in the long term were randomized to 1 of 3 groups assigned to withdraw from TBZ in a double-blind, staggered fashion during a 5-day period.


The chorea scores of subjects withdrawn from TBZ treatment increased by 5.3 units from days 1 to 3, whereas the scores of the group with partial or no withdrawal of TBZ treatment increased by 3.0 units (P = 0.0773). A post hoc analysis of the linear trend was positive for reemergent chorea (P = 0.0486). No serious adverse events were reported after abrupt withdrawal of TBZ treatment.


The trend for reemergence of chorea in patients with Huntington disease who were withdrawn from TBZ treatment is consistent with the findings from previous studies, thus showing the effectiveness of TBZ in reducing chorea.

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