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Sixty-One Percent of Newly Diagnosed Parkinson's Disease Patients Do Not Receive Any Drug Treatment in the First Year of Diagnosis
Date:8/19/2007

Levodopa Remains the Most Widely Prescribed Drug for Parkinson's Disease,

According to a New Report from Decision Resources

WALTHAM, Mass., Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms focusing on pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that 61 percent of newly diagnosed Parkinson's disease patients do not receive any drug treatment in the first year of diagnosis. According to the new report entitled Treatment Algorithms for Parkinson's Disease, failure of newly diagnosed Parkinson's disease patients to receive pharmacological treatment within the first 12 months of diagnosis likely occurs as a result of patients' decisions to delay treatment until symptoms become sufficiently troublesome. Furthermore, because the guidelines of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) do not define specific time periods for when treatment should be initiated, patients may be reluctant to begin levodopa therapy, such as with Bristol Myers Squibb's Sinemet, knowing that side-effects will arise, specifically motor response complications.

Levodopa provides greater motor benefit than dopamine agonists, such as GlaxoSmithKline's Requip or Boehringer Ingelheim's Mirapex, but inevitably results in the development of levopoda-induced side effects, including dyskinesias, off time (sudden motor switches between normal and Parkinson movements) and wearing-off complications (shortened periods of benefit after each levodopa use).

"Levodopa continues to be the gold-standard Parkinson's disease treatment, with 99% of neurologists and 95% of PCPs we surveyed currently prescribing it in their Parkinson's disease practice," said Nicole Westphal, Ph.D., analyst at Decision Resources. "However, first-line levodopa use will decrease over the next two years as physicians increasingly use levodopa-sparing approaches. Patient demand for well-tolerated, levodopa-sparing treatments will continue to drive increases i
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SOURCE Decision Resources

Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.

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