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Mov Disord. 2017 Feb;32(2):278-282. doi: 10.1002/mds.26850. Epub 2016 Nov 10.

Spinal cord stimulation improves gait in patients with Parkinson's disease previously treated with deep brain stimulation.

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Division of Functional Neurosurgery of Institute of Psychiatry, Department of Neurology, University of São Paulo Medical School, São Paulo, Brazil.
Movement Disorders Section, Department of Neurology, Hospital das Clínicas, University of São Paulo Medical School, São Paulo, Brazil.



Deep brain stimulation and levodopatherapy ameliorate motor manifestations in Parkinson's disease, but their effects on axial signs are not sustained in the long term.


The objective of this study was to investigate the safety and efficacy of spinal cord stimulation on gait disturbance in advanced Parkinson's disease.


A total of 4 Parkinson's disease patients who experienced significant postural instability and gait disturbance years after chronic subthalamic stimulation were treated with spinal cord stimulation at 300 Hz. Timed-Up-GO and 20-meter-walk tests, UPDRS III, freezing of gait questionnaire, and quality-of-life scores were measured at 6 months and compared to baseline values. Blinded assessments to measure performance in the Timed-Up-GO and 20-meter-walk tests were carried out during sham stimulation at 300 Hz and 60 Hz.


Patients treated with spinal cord stimulation had approximately 50% to 65% improvement in gait measurements and 35% to 45% in UPDRS III and quality-of-life scores. During blinded evaluations, significant improvements in the Timed-Up-GO and 20-meter-walk tests were only recorded at 300 Hz.


Spinal cord stimulation at 300 Hz was well tolerated and led to a significant improvement in gait. © 2016 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.


freezing of gait; locomotion; parkinson; postural instability and gait disturbances; spinal cord

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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