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Can 'off time' be reduced in Parkinson's patients?

Can 'off time' be reduced in Parkinson's patients?
18th April 2012

In patients with Parkinson's disease, there are periods when responses to medication fluctuate.

During 'off time' a person becomes indifferent to treatment and experiences an intensification of symptoms.

Trying to reduce this time is key in improving the quality of life of patients with the condition and according to a new study an intestinal gel could be the answer.

Results from a phase three randomised, double-blind clinical trial showed that levodopa-carbidopa intestinal gel (LCIG) could help reduce symptoms when infused through a portable pump connected to a tube in the intestine.

The infusion successfully delivered levodopa-carbidopa drugs - which are used to treat Parkinson's disease - continuously through the body.

This avoids the fluctuations caused by oral usage, which has long been thought to contribute to the wearing off period of medication.

Dr Warren Olanow, author of the study, commented: "Less 'off' time for people with Parkinson's means more time during the day in which they can enjoy the benefits of levodopa-carbidopa therapy and experience improved quality of life."

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