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Parkinson's Disease

What is the difference?

08/31/2007

Question:

What is the difference between Parkinson`s Disease and Cortical Basal Degeneration?

Answer:

Both of these diseases have features of parkinsonism.  These include slowness, rigidity, postural instability and tremor.  There are other features that are more prominent in Corticobasal degeneration (CBD) early in the disease that are not typical for idiopathic Parkinson's Disease (PD).  These are things like cognitive impairment, limb apraxia ("alien limb phenomena"), myoclonus, trouble swallowing, trouble speaking and dystonia.  Some of these features may be present in advanced PD, but not in typically in early PD.  In addition, CBD is less responsive to Parkinson's disease medications and also has a more rapid progression when compared to PD.  Pathologically, CBD has more involvement of the cerebral cortex (the outer layer of the brain) than idiopathic PD.  

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Response by:

Punit  Agrawal, DO Punit Agrawal, DO
Assistant Professor of Neurology
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University