Research News

Depressive symptoms can amplify embarrassment in essential tremor

15 Jul 2016

Embarrassment can be a considerable problem for patients with essential tremor (ET) and is a major motivator for treatment. Depression is also a common feature of ET; as many as 35% of patients report moderate to severe depressive symptoms. The research goal was to assess the associations between these motor and psychosocial factors (tremor, depression, embarrassment) in ET, with a particular interest in more fully assessing the possible association between depression and embarrassment.

Journal of Clinical Movement Disorders

A Series of 211 Children with Probable Essential Tremor

8 Jul 2016

The objective of this study was to characterize the clinical features, course, and treatment of essential tremor (ET) in children. The current findings indicate that onset at birth is possible, family history is less common in children than in adults, and tremor at rest is possible. Functional disability was noted in 55% of children, and 29.4% required medication.

International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society

Early- and late-onset essential tremor patients represent clinically distinct subgroups

7 Jul 2016

Essential tremor is a very common disease defined by sparse clinical criteria. It is unlikely that essential tremor is an etiologically homogeneous disease. Stratifying broadly defined diseases using clinical characteristics has often aided the etiopathological understanding. Most studies of essential tremor show 2 distinct age at onset peaks: early and late. This study investigates phenotypical differences between early- and late-onset essential tremor patients.

International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society

Heart rate variability to differentiate essential tremor from early-stage tremor-dominant Parkinson's disease

28 Jun 2016

Essential tremor (ET) and Parkinson's disease (PD) are the most common movement disorders in the elderly, but it is difficult to differentiate ET from early-stage tremor-dominant Parkinson's disease (TDPD).  This study investigates heart rate variability (HRV) to differentiate tremor-dominant PD from ET at the early stage of disease.

Journal of Neurological Sciences

Orthostatic tremor: a cerebellar pathology?

21 Jun 2016

Primary orthostatic tremor is characterized by high frequency tremor affecting the legs and trunk during the standing position. Cerebellar defects were suggested in orthostatic tremor without direct evidence. This study aims to characterize the anatomo-functional defects of the cerebellar motor pathways in orthostatic tremor. The findings shed a new light on the structural defects and intrinsic functional substrates of unsteadiness and imbalance in orthostatic tremor.

Brain - A Journal of Neurology

Functional correlates of the therapeutic and adverse effects evoked by thalamic stimulation for essential tremor

21 Jun 2016

Deep brain stimulation is an established neurosurgical therapy for movement disorders including essential tremor and Parkinson’s disease. While typically highly effective, deep brain stimulation can sometimes yield suboptimal therapeutic benefit and can cause adverse effects. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that intraoperative functional magnetic resonance imaging could be used to detect deep brain stimulation-evoked changes in functional and effective connectivity that would correlate with the therapeutic and adverse effects of stimulation. The results suggest that thalamic deep brain stimulation in tremor likely exerts its effects through modulation of both olivocerebellar and thalamocortical circuits. 

Brain - A Journal of Neurology

Self-reported physical activity in essential tremor: Relationship with tremor, balance, and cognitive function

1 Jun 2016

Physical inactivity may be the result of medical comorbidities. Inactivity itself may also lead to important health consequences, especially in older patients. Essential tremor (ET) patients may have a variety of physical and cognitive problems that could detrimentally impact on level of physical activity.  This study looks at self-reported physical activity in these patients, assessed using the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) in 100 ET cases (mean age 80.5 years) enrolled in a clinical study.

Journal of Neurological Sciences

Using Portable Transducers to Measure Tremor Severity

16 May 2016

Portable motion transducers, suitable for measuring tremor, are now available at a reasonable cost. The use of these transducers requires knowledge of their limitations and data analysis. The purpose of this review is to provide a practical overview and example software for using portable motion transducers in the quantification of tremor.

Tremor and Other Hyperkinetic Movements (TOHM) 

The relationship between essential tremor and Parkinson's disease

10 May 2016

Essential tremor (ET) and Parkinson's disease (PD) are the two most common tremor disorders encountered in a movement disorders clinic. Although distinct clinical-pathological entities, both disorders may share overlapping features in addition to rest and postural tremor, such as bradykinesia, rigidity, gait and balance impairment and some non-motor signs.  This review discusses the latest data supporting a relationship between ET and PD and the implications for possible pathogenic link and treatment.

Parkinsonism & Related Disorders Journal

A Pilot Study of Focused Ultrasound Thalamotomy for Essential Tremor

10 May 2016

Recent advances have enabled delivery of high-intensity focused ultrasound through the intact human cranium with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) guidance. This preliminary study investigates the use of transcranial MRI-guided focused ultrasound thalamotomy for the treatment of essential tremor.

NEJM - The New England Journal of Medicine

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