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Parkinson’s Disease
Volume 2011, Article ID 485063, 6 pages
Review Article

Dopamine-Induced Nonmotor Symptoms of Parkinson's Disease

1Department of Neurology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
2Division of Neurology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27705, USA

Received 15 October 2010; Accepted 14 February 2011

Academic Editor: Irena Rektorova

Copyright © 2011 Ariane Park and Mark Stacy. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Nonmotor symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD) may emerge secondary to the underlying pathogenesis of the disease, while others are recognized side effects of treatment. Inevitably, there is an overlap as the disease advances and patients require higher dosages and more complex medical regimens. The non-motor symptoms that emerge secondary to dopaminergic therapy encompass several domains, including neuropsychiatric, autonomic, and sleep. These are detailed in the paper. Neuropsychiatric complications include hallucinations and psychosis. In addition, compulsive behaviors, such as pathological gambling, hypersexuality, shopping, binge eating, and punding, have been shown to have a clear association with dopaminergic medications. Dopamine dysregulation syndrome (DDS) is a compulsive behavior that is typically viewed through the lens of addiction, with patients needing escalating dosages of dopamine replacement therapy. Treatment side effects on the autonomic system include nausea, orthostatic hypotension, and constipation. Sleep disturbances include fragmented sleep, nighttime sleep problems, daytime sleepiness, and sleep attacks. Recognizing the non-motor symptoms that can arise specifically from dopamine therapy is useful to help optimize treatment regimens for this complex disease.