Brain Disconnects Spotted in Parkinson's Patients With Visual Hallucinations

From Drugs.com - September 28, 2017

Brain Disconnects Spotted in Parkinson's Patients With Visual Hallucinations

THURSDAY, Sept. 28, 2017 -- Researchers say they have discovered a possible explanation for visual hallucinations in people with Parkinson's disease.

The researchers conducted brain scans on 15 patients with visual hallucinations, 40 patients without visual hallucinations, and a control group of 15 people without Parkinson's disease.

In all of the Parkinson's disease patients, numerous areas of the brain communicated less with the rest of the brain, compared to the control group, the Netherlands researchers noted.

But patients with visual hallucinations had several additional brain areas with decreased connectivity with the rest of the brain, especially areas that are important in maintaining attention and processing of visual information.

However, the study did not prove that this caused the hallucinations.

The study was published online Sept. 27 in the journal Radiology.

"Visual hallucinations in Parkinson's disease are frequent and debilitating," study author Dr. Dagmar Hepp, from VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam, said in a journal news release.


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