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Assessing reliable change using the repeatable battery for the assessment of neuropsychological status (RBANS) for patients with Parkinson's Disease undergoing deep brain stimulation (DBS) surgery

Schoenberg MR, Rinehardt E, Duff K, Mattingly M, Bharucha KJ, Scott JG.


Department of Psychiatry and Neurosciences, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Florida, USA. mschoenb@health.suf.edu


Parkinson's disease (PD) is progressive neurological disease characterized by resting tremor, rigidity, akinesia, postural instability and cognitive changes. The symptoms of PD are debilitating and often become unsatisfactorily treated by medication. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is an effective treatment to significantly reduce the cardinal motor symptoms of PD. However, the neuropsychological effects of this treatment are less clear. This study examined pre- to post-DBS scores on the Repeatable Battery for the Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS) using Reliable Change Indices (RCIs) derived from 20 patients with PD who were medically managed, and then compared to 20 patients with PD treated with DBS and medication. When using group statistical analyses and false discovery rate correction, no significant differences between or within groups were evident at baseline or at follow-up. However, when using the RCIs more patients in the DBS group exhibited reliable change in RBANS scores than did the Med Tx group. Although preliminary, these RCIs provide clinicians and researchers a foundational tool for assessing the effects of interventions (e.g., DBS) independent of the effects of PD and measurement error when using the RBANS.


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