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Drug Pramipexole Usage Linked To Gambling Addiction In Parkinsons Patients

Dr. M. Leann Dodd and colleagues from Minnesota medical center, Rochester has found new evidences between the usage of the drug Pramipexole, which is used in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease and severe addiction to gambling // .

Pathologic gambling which is a severe addiction to gambling is a very rare phenomenon mostly occurring due to usage of anti-Parkinson’s drug and the addiction to gambling is stopped when the patient stops taking the drug. The study was done in 11 patients with Parkinson’s disease and they had addiction to gambling, these patients were admitted in Mayo Clinic in between 2002 and 2004. Despite having had no previous history of compulsive gambling, one patient had lost more than $200,000 and another in excess of $100,000.

Researchers also conducted a systemic review of previous cases linked to gambling and Parkinson’s disease admitted in Mayo Clinic and found that all the patients with pathologic gambling addiction and Parkinson’s disease received treatment of dopamine agonist drug called Pramipexole. The drug manufacturers Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals producing Pramipexole (Mirapex) have mentioned the pathologic gambling addiction as a side effect to the use of Pramipexole. Of the 11 patients with links of Pramipexole and gambling 7 patients started gambling within three months of using the drug and the remaining 4 patients got addicted to gambling after a longer time, in both the cases the gambling addiction stopped after the drug was stopped. The mechanism between the activation of gambling addiction to usage of Pramipexole is still to be explored by the scientists.

SOURCE: Archives of Neurology, September 200.

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