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Parkinson Treatment Causes Gambling. 2005-09-18
In recent clinical findings some suggest that pathologic gambling is an unusual result of using anti-Parkinson's drugs. The new research revealed that the gambling problem may be resolved when the drug Pramipexole is stopped. The findings appear in the Archives of Neurology.
The archives are based from a study with Parkinson patients. 11 Parkinson patients with the pathologic gambling disorder participated in the study from 2002-2004 at the Mayo Clinic. None of the patients had the disorder before, but managed to loose thousands and thousands of dollars.
Dr. M. Leann Dodd and colleagues were able to review and assess the patients impartially. They came from Rochester, Minnesota-based medical center in order to conduct the study. Previous cases they found there to be a link between the disease, and the gambling disorder.
All of the patients were given Dopamine Agonist, a drug for the treatment of Parkinson�s. In all, but two of the cases, the Agonist was replaced with Pramipexole. Pramipexole has been linked to having this side effect for pathologic gambling.
In seven patients, the pathologic gambling began within three months of starting Pramipexole, or changing the dose, the study confirms. The other four patients stopped the gambling after the patients stopped taking the drug.
The drug under the Mirapex package, the trade name Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals markets Pramipexole. Part of the study began because of signs of pathological gambling, but also because it was listed on the side effect package of the box. This proof encourages makers or distributors of the product to try to advertise the side effect more. At the moment this is left as small print on the package.
(By Andrea)