Background/objective: As the incidence of Parkinson's disease (PD) is related to aging, we consider it important to determine how the initial symptoms change with age in order to diagnose early elderly cases of PD accurately.
Methods: 84 patients (age at onset 70.7+/-9.0 years; mean +/-1 SD) were studied to see whether the initial symptoms change according to age.
Results: The prevalence of resting tremor was significantly lower in patients of advanced age (p = 0.041). In contrast, the incidence of postural and gait disorders increased significantly with aging (p = 0.032). The prevalences of rigidity and kinetic disorders, which are important clinical features of PD, were not influenced by aging.
Conclusion: These findings suggest that the cause of PD is not related to the aging process itself, since the prevalences of all symptoms were not influenced by aging. Knowledge of the prevalence of the initial symptoms of PD may contribute to the accurate diagnosis in early and elderly cases.
Copyright 2000 S. Karger AG, Basel.