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J Neural Transm (Vienna). 2002 Feb;109(2):191-6.

Substantia nigra echogenicity is normal in non-extrapyramidal cerebral disorders but increased in Parkinson's disease.

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Department of Neurology, Rostock University, Federal Republic of Germany.


Transcranial sonography (TCS) revealed substantia nigra (SN) hyperechogenicity in idiopathic Parkinson's disease (IPD). To further evaluate specificity of this finding, we examined 30 IPD patients and 30 age-matched subjects with non-extrapyramidal cerebral disorders (NED). All IPD patients showed a SN hyperechogenicity, in 17 it was bilateral and in 13 unilateral. 7 NED patients had a SN hyperechogenicity, in all it was unilateral, confirming previous results in healthy subjects. Bilateral SN hyperechogenicity indicates IPD and normal SN echogenicity indicates NED. In 30% of patients TCS does not distinguish between IPD and NED. Data further support the assumption that bilateral SN hyperechogenicity is specific for IPD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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