Background and objective: Parkinsonism is a group of neurological disorders characterized by extrapiramidal signs. Often, the differential diagnosis between parkinsonism, essential tremor and drug-induced parkinsonism is difficult. The aim of the study was to evaluate the utility of (123I)-FP-CIT SPECT in patients with movement disorders.
Patients and method: 52 patients were referred from the neurology department to characterize those with parkinsonism. Patients were clinically evaluated and those with Parkinson's disease were assessed using the rating scale Hoehn & Yahr and the UPDRS motor score. Subsequently, a (123I)-FP-CIT SPECT was performed with a qualitative analysis.
Results: All patients with essential tremor and drug-induced parkinsonism had a normal SPECT. All patients with parkinsonism displayed SPECT defects, except for four who had a normal SPECT result. Two of them were categorized as vascular parkinsonisms, one patient had a Shy-Drager's syndrome and the another one had probably a Parkinson's disease. The sensitivity and specificity were 90.47% (38/42; CI95%, 81.59%-99.35%) and 100% (10/10; CI95%, 69.15%-100%), respectively.
Conclusions: (123I)-FP-CIT SPECT is an effective tool to study the integrity of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal system. Moreover, it permits to characterize the different types of parkinsonism.