Association Between Functional Impairment, Depression, and Extrapyramidal Signs in Neuroleptic-Free Patients With Alzheimer Disease

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Abstract

Background:

Extrapyramidal signs (EPSs) are commonly observed in patients with Alzheimer disease (AD). We report here the base rate of EPS in a large cohort of patients with AD who were not receiving neuroleptic drugs, and the associations of EPS with functional outcomes and depressive symptoms.

Methods:

In a consortium involving 56 clinics, we recruited 2614 patients with AD. We estimated basic activities of daily living (ADL) and instrumental ADL by the Barthel index and the Seoul-Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (S-IADL) scales, respectively. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the 15-item Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS-15). The EPS group was defined by the presence of at least 1 EPS based on a focused neurologic examination.

Results:

The prevalence of EPS-positive patients was 12%. These had lower Korean version of the Mini-Mental State Examination (K-MMSE) scores than the EPS-negative cases (P < .001). After controlling for demographic, medical, radiological, genetic, and cognitive (K-MMSE) factors, the proportion of patients with impaired ADL was significantly higher in the EPS group than in the non-EPS group (P < .001, odds ratio = 1.90, 95% confidence interval, 1.45–2.48, and logistic regression). The S-IADL scores were significantly higher in the EPS group than this in the non-EPS group (P < .001, regression coefficient = 3.19, and median regression). The GDS-15 scores were higher in the EPS group (P = .04, regression coefficient = 0.89, and median regression).

Conclusion:

The presence of EPS in patients with AD who were not receiving neuroleptic drugs was associated with more impaired basic and instrumental ADL functioning and with greater depression symptoms.

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