Objective: Investigate whether the effects of sensory training differ ON vs. OFF medication in Parkinson’s disease using the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS-III).
Background: PD SAFExTM is a sensory training exercise rehabilitation therapy that is well known to improve the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease (PD) using the widely used assessment tool UPDRS-III (references??). Interestingly, previous studies have mostly assessed the effects of PD SAFExTM when ON dopaminergic medications. Given that medication masks many of the motor symptoms of PD, and effectiveness is highly variable, in order to truly assess the effects of a rehabilitation therapy on the symptoms of PD, OFF dopaminergic medication may be critical. Thus, the effect of sensory training was evaluated in participants in both the ON and OFF dopaminergic states.
Method: N=345 participants participated in a PD SAFExTM intervention. Of which, n=229 were tested ON medication and n=49 were tested OFF dopaminergic medication. Subsections of UPDRS-III were computed for each cardinal symptom (total resting tremor, total action tremor, total rigidity, total bradykinesia, balance (arise from chair+posture+gait+postural instability). Data was analyzed in SPSS using a repeated-measures ANOVA was conducted.
Results: Post intervention, for the ON and OFF medication state PD SAFExTM significantly improved each of the motor symptoms (p<0.0001). Furthermore, a within subject analysis revealed in the OFF medication state, significant improvements only to balance (F(1,48)=9.7, p<0.002), action tremor (F(1,48)=3.8, p<0.05) and resting tremor (F(1,48)=4.67, p<0.037).
Conclusion: PD SAFExTM improves all cardinal symptoms in adjunct to medications. More importantly, without the influence of medication only balance and tremor revealed significant improvement which is important because this could mean sensory training may influence basal ganglia function without the presence of external dopamine.
To cite this abstract in AMA style:K. Sangarapillai, B. Norman, E. Beck, Q. Almeida. Do improvements to primary symptoms from sensory training differ in Parkinson’s disease ON vs. OFF dopaminergic medications? [abstract]. Mov Disord. 2020; 35 (suppl 1). https://www.mdsabstracts.org/abstract/do-improvements-to-primary-symptoms-from-sensory-training-differ-in-parkinsons-disease-on-vs-off-dopaminergic-medications/. Accessed December 7, 2023.
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