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Parkinson's disease 'can lead to compulsive behaviour'

Parkinson's disease 'can lead to compulsive behaviour'
18th May 2010

A new scientific study claims that a large proportion of people living with Parkinson's disease begin to engage in compulsive behaviour.

Almost one in every seven people with the condition begin to engage in some kind of impulsive or reckless behaviour, such as gambling or binge eating, according to an article in the Archives of Neurology.

Over 3,000 patients across North America were assessed, with compulsion disorders detected in 13 per cent of patients.

In addition, those who were taking dopamine agonist medications for their symptoms were found to be at an even higher risk of developing these behaviours.

Reacting to the study, Parkinson's UK's director of research Dr Kieran Breen said: "This major study highlights just how widespread compulsive behaviour problems are.

"But we still urgently need to find ways of identifying people who may be at risk of developing compulsive behaviour and more effective ways to manage these problems."

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