Author Affiliation: Parkinson's Institute, Sunnyvale, Calif.
The successful use of levodopa, the immediate precursor of dopamine,
to reverse motor deficits in Parkinson disease (PD) revolutionized treatment.1 But for most patients with PD, the benefits of levodopa
therapy have been tempered by adverse effects such as involuntary movements
or hallucinations. These adverse effects occur in as many as 90% of patients
receiving long-term treatment, although whether they are actually caused by
levodopa treatment, or simply reflect progression of the underlying disease,
Tanner CM. Dopamine Agonists in Early Therapy for Parkinson DiseasePromise and Problems. JAMA. 2000;284(15):1971-1973. doi:10.1001/jama.284.15.1971