Display Settings:


Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2013 Dec;19(12):1094-9. doi: 10.1016/j.parkreldis.2013.07.020. Epub 2013 Aug 7.

Reproductive factors and clinical features of Parkinson's disease.

Author information

  • 1Nutrition and Dietetics Service, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Viale Golgi 19, 27100 Pavia, Italy. Electronic address: e.cereda@smatteo.pv.it.



Literature suggests that sex steroid hormones may modify the risk for Parkinson's disease (PD). We investigated the potential effect of reproductive factors on the clinical features of idiopathic PD (IPD) patients.


All IPD female patients admitted to and evaluated at our Institute over a 12-month period were included in the present cross-sectional study. We investigated the effect of the following parameters by multivariate linear regression analysis: age at menarche, age at menopause, length of fertile life, duration of exposure to endogenous estrogens and cumulative length of pregnancies, use of contraceptives and hormonal replacement therapy.


In total, 579 patients were evaluated and 497 reported menopause before PD onset. In this population, age at PD onset was positively associated with age at menarche and at menopause, length of fertile life and duration of estrogen exposure. Moreover, UPDRS motor score was inversely associated with age at menopause, length of fertile life and duration of estrogen exposure. Increasing age at menarche was also associated with predominant resting tremor at PD onset. In models refitted on patients with early PD (disease duration <5 years; N = 226) all the associations found were confirmed. The relationship between surrogates of estrogen exposure and UPDRS motor score actually became more significant.


Our observations support the concept that hormonal exposure of the nigro-striatal network during life may influence its susceptibility to degenerative stimuli in later life, but the association does not seem to be unique? unidirectional. In particular, increased severity of PD signs correlates with shorter duration of estrogen exposure. The underlying mechanisms need to be clarified.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Clinical features; Estrogens; Parkinson's disease; Reproductive factors

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk