Yang HJ, Park SH, Seo M et al.
Department of Neurology, Ulsan University Hospital, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Ulsan, South Korea.
Neurotoxicology. Mar 2017.
We report the clinical features and imaging findings of presynaptic dopamine transporter (DAT) positron emission tomography (PET) in four of patients with liver cirrhosis and concurrent parkinsonism. We also reviewed previously reported cases of cirrhosis-related parkinsonism using dopaminergic molecular imaging. Our results using (18)F-radiolabeled N-(3-fluoropropyl)-2β-carboxymethoxy-3β-(4-iodophenyl) nortropane (FP-CIT) DAT PET in four patients with cirrhosis and parkinsonism showed two different molecular imaging patterns well related to their neurological symptoms. (18)F-FP-CIT PET imaging of two patients showed normal DAT density in the striatum. Their clinical features included symmetric parkinsonism, early gait disturbances and postural instability, and the absence of resting tremor. The other two patients showed reduced striatal DAT uptake asymmetrically with a rostrocaudal gradient similar to idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD). They had clinical findings of hemiparkinsonism, resting tremor, without early gait disturbance or postural instability. They also showed sustained response to levodopa treatment. Based on the structured review of 21 cases with cirrhosis-related parkinsonism in the literature including the present cases, we categorized cirrhotic parkinsonism into three groups. Eleven of the twenty-one cases were categorized into group 1; levodopa-resistant atypical parkinsonism without a dopaminergic deficit in molecular imaging similar to primary manganism. Another 6 cases were categorized into group 2; coincidental IPD with superimposed cirrhosis with sustained good response to levodopa and presynaptic dopaminergic deficit with rostrocaudal gradient typical of IPD. The other undetermined 4 cases were categorized into group 3. They showed symmetric parkinsonism with variable response to levodopa therapy. Their molecular imaging showed a global diffuse dopaminergic deficit in the presynaptic molecular imaging distinct to group 1 (normal uptake) or 2 (asymmetric rostrocaudal deficit). In conclusion, cirrhosis-related parkinsonism is a heterogeneous disorder.