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Posted by on Jul 9, 2021 in Parkinson's Disease | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study investigated the association between smoking cigarettes and psychosis in patients with Parkinson´s disease (PD). Researchers suggested that smoking may increase the risk of psychotic symptoms in PD patients.

Some background

PD is a chronic disease that affects the brain cells over time. Brain cells are responsible for body function and movement which is impaired in PD patients. These patients might have physical symptoms such as tremors, and mental symptoms such as psychosis. Psychosis causes people to lose touch with their reality. Patients often see, hear, or believe things that are not real. PD-related psychosis (PDP) is defined by the appearance of symptoms continuously for a month after a PD diagnosis. PDP is predictive for needing nursing home placement, declining mental capacities, and death.

Prior studies suggested that cigarette smoking plays a role in psychosis. The nicotine present in cigarettes causes a brain stimulation effect that increases the risk of psychosis. However, the association between smoking and PDP is still not clear.

Methods & findings

This study included information about 485 patients with PD. Of these, 28 (5.8%) patients had PDP. The main outcomes measured were psychotic symptoms, PD progression and symptoms, levodopa dose, and mental state.  

PDP in patients with PD was associated with current smoking. PD patients who smoked were 7.39 times more at risk of developing PDP. 

The bottom line

This study concluded that smoking may increase the risk of psychosis in patients with PD

The fine print

This study was based on hospital medical records that might be missing information. Therefore, the results of this study might be affected. Further studies are necessary. 

What’s next?

Discuss with your doctor methods to help you quit smoking.

Published By :

Journal of the neurological sciences

Date :

May 24, 2021

Original Title :

Does an association between cigarette smoking and Parkinson’s Disease-related psychosis exist? Insights from a large non-demented cohort.

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