Apathy, but not depression, reflects inefficient cognitive strategies in Parkinson's disease

Sara Varanese, Bernardo Perfetti, Maria Felice Ghilardi, Alessandro Di Rocco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The relationship between apathy, depression and cognitive impairment in Parkinson's disease (PD) is still controversial. The objective of this study is to investigate whether apathy and depression are associated with inefficient cognitive strategies in PD. Methods: In this prospective clinical cohort study conducted in a university-based clinical and research movement disorders center we studied 48 PD patients. Based on clinical evaluation, they were classified in two groups: PD with apathy (PD-A group, n = 23) and PD without apathy (PD-NA group, n = 25). Patients received clinical and neuropsychological evaluations. The clinical evaluation included: Apathy Evaluation Scale-patient version, Hamilton Depression Rating Scale-17 items, the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale and the Hoehn and Yahr staging system; the neuropsychological evaluation explored speed information processing, attention, working memory, executive function, learning abilities and memory, which included several measures of recall (immediate free, short delay free, long delay free and cued, and total recall). Findings: PD-A and PD-NA groups did not differ in age, disease duration, treatment, and motor condition, but differed in recall (p

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere17846
JournalPLoS One
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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