Hormonal regulators of food intake and weight gain in Parkinson's disease after subthalamic nucleus stimulation

Neuro Endocrinol Lett. 2011;32(4):437-41.


Objectives: Weight gain has been reported in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) treated with deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus (STN-DBS). To evaluate the influence of STN-DBS on weight changes, we studied food-related hormones.

Design: Anthropometric parameters and food-related hormones (leptin, adiponectin, resistin, ghrelin, cortisol, insulin, and thyroid stimulating hormone) were measured in 27 patients with STN-DBS during a 12 month period following electrode implantation.

Results: Besides marked motor improvements on STN-DBS, PD patients significantly gained weight. The mean weight gain at 12 months was 5.2±(SD)5.8 kg. A significant decrease in cortisol levels compared to baseline appeared at month 2 and persisted at 12 months (p<0.01, corrected), with no significant changes in other hormones tested.

Conclusions: Changes in peripheral food-related hormones do not appear to cause weight gain in PD patients. Direct effects of STN-DBS on hypothalamic catabolic/anabolic peptide balance remain hypothetical and necessitate further elucidation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / blood
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Deep Brain Stimulation / methods*
  • Eating / physiology*
  • Female
  • Ghrelin / blood
  • Hormones / blood*
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone / blood
  • Hypothalamus / physiology
  • Insulin / blood
  • Leptin / blood
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinson Disease / metabolism*
  • Parkinson Disease / therapy*
  • Resistin / blood
  • Subthalamic Nucleus / physiology*
  • Thyrotropin / blood
  • Weight Gain / physiology


  • ADIPOQ protein, human
  • Adiponectin
  • Ghrelin
  • Hormones
  • Insulin
  • Leptin
  • RETN protein, human
  • Resistin
  • Thyrotropin
  • Hydrocortisone