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BACKGROUND: Parkinson's disease (PD) comorbid with rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (RBD) may show more severe motor and nonmotor symptoms, suggesting a distinct PD subtype. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of RBD on the longitudinal change of motor and nonmotor symptoms in patients with PD. METHODS: Patients with early PD (diagnosed within 3.5 years) recruited from 2010 to 2019 were followed every 18 months in the Oxford Parkinson's Disease Centre Discovery cohort. At each visit, we used standard questionnaires and measurements to assess demographic features and motor and nonmotor symptoms (including RBD, daytime sleepiness, mood, autonomic symptoms, cognition, and olfaction). Data were analyzed with linear mixed effects and Cox regression models. Possible RBD (pRBD) was longitudinally determined according to RBD Screening Questionnaire scores. RESULTS: A total of 923 patients were recruited (mean age: 67.1 ± 9.59 years; 35.9% female), and 788 had follow-up assessment(s) (mean: 4.8 ± 1.98 years, range: 1.3-8.3). Among them, 33.3% were identified as pRBD (PD + pRBD). Patients with PD + pRBD had more severe baseline symptoms and showed faster progression on Movement Disorder Society-Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale parts I and III, Purdue Pegboard test, and Beck Depression Inventory scores. Moreover, PD + pRBD was associated with an increased level of risk for mild cognitive impairment (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.36, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.01-1.83), freezing of gait (HR = 1.42, 95% CI: 1.10-1.86), and frequent falling (HR = 1.62, 95% CI: 1.02-2.60). CONCLUSIONS: Patients with PD + pRBD progress faster on motor, mood, and cognitive symptoms, confirming a more aggressive PD subtype that can be identified at baseline and has major clinical implications. © 2021 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

Original publication




Journal article


Mov Disord

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Parkinson's disease, REM sleep behavior disorder, longitudinal study, motor and nonmotor symptoms, progression