Increased medial orbitofrontal [18F]fluorodopa uptake in Parkinsonian impulse control disorders

Mov Disord. 2012 May;27(6):778-82. doi: 10.1002/mds.24941. Epub 2012 Feb 5.


Background: Impulse control disorders (ICDs) occur frequently in PD patients.

Methods: To investigate the possible involvement of the mesostriatal and mesolimbic monoaminergic function in ICDs associated with PD, we examined patients with (n = 10) and without (n = 10) ICDs using the brain [(18) F]fluorodopa PET.

Results: Patients with ICDs (e.g., pathological gambling, hypersexuality, and compulsive eating) showed up to 35% higher [(18) F]fluorodopa uptake in the medial orbitofrontal cortex, compared to control patients, but no differences in the striatum. The results remained significant also after excluding subjects with comorbid psychiatric disorders.

Conclusions: Increased monoaminergic activity in the medial orbitofrontal cortex might be associated with increased sensitivity for ICDs under dopamine-replacement therapy in PD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Compulsive Behavior / complications
  • Compulsive Behavior / metabolism*
  • Dihydroxyphenylalanine / analogs & derivatives
  • Disruptive, Impulse Control, and Conduct Disorders / complications
  • Disruptive, Impulse Control, and Conduct Disorders / metabolism*
  • Frontal Lobe / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinsonian Disorders / complications
  • Parkinsonian Disorders / metabolism*


  • fluorodopa F 18
  • Dihydroxyphenylalanine