2019 Volume 58 Issue 10 Pages 1417-1421
Objective Assessing daily motor fluctuations is an important part of the disease management for patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the frequent recording of subjective and/or objective assessments is not always feasible, and easier monitoring methods have been sought. Previous studies have reported that the spontaneous eye-blink rate (EBR) is correlated with the dopamine levels in the brain. Thus, the continuous monitoring of the EBR may be useful for predicting the motor status in patients with PD.
Methods Electrooculograms (EOGs) were recorded for up to 7.5 hours from three PD patients using a wearable device that resembled ordinary glasses. An receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was performed to compare the ability of the EBR estimates at each time-point (Blink Index) and the plasma levodopa levels to predict the motor status.
Results The Blink Index was correlated with the plasma levodopa levels. When an indicator for the first hour of the observation period was included in the model, the Blink Index discerned wearing-off and dyskinesia as accurately as the plasma levodopa level.
Conclusion Our study provides preliminary evidence regarding the utility of continuous EBR monitoring for the non-invasive evaluation of the motor status in patients with PD.