Increases in BMI have been linked to higher scores on a Parkinson’s disease severity scale; however no association between changes in BMI and a decreased likelihood of survival in people with PD were documented.
Previous research has found an association between greater body mass index (BMI), in the form of midlife obesity, and the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease (PD). Moreover, PD research has also indicated weight loss (lower BMI) is quite common among individuals with PD when compared to healthy controls in the general population; Researchers aimed to investigate the association between changes in BMI, changes in Parkinson’s severity rating, and survival in individuals with PD. A sample of 1741 participants were given a placebo or a treatment, consisting of 10g/d creatine monohydrate (a dietary supplement often used for weight gain). The researchers reported that in participants whose BMI increased, lower total scores on the PD severity scale decreased. Researchers also discovered that in participants whose BMI decreased, higher PD severity scale scores were noticed. Although changes in BMI were found to be associated with changes in the PD severity scale, the researchers found that changes in BMI were not associated with survival in those with PD.
The researchers suggest that health professionals, families, and patients should closely record fluctuations in BMI in individuals with PD; this may assist in preventing further complications. These researchers also recommend that future research involving longer clinical trials may be valuable in comprehending the association between fluctuations in BMI and the likelihood of survival in persons with PD.
Wills, A. M. A., Pérez, A., Wang, J., Su, X., Morgan, J., Rajan, S. S., … & Mari, Z. (2016). Association Between Change in Body Mass Index, Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale Scores, and Survival Among Persons With Parkinson Disease: Secondary Analysis of Longitudinal Data From NINDS Exploratory Trials in Parkinson Disease Long-term Study 1. JAMA neurology, 1-8.
Written by Melissa Booker