Image_2_Multi-Dimensional, Short-Timescale Quantification of Parkinson's Disease and Essential Tremor Motor Dysfunction.tiff
Introduction: Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive movement disorder characterized by heterogenous motor dysfunction with fluctuations in severity. Objective, short-timescale characterization of this dysfunction is necessary as therapies become increasingly adaptive.
Objectives: This study aims to characterize a novel, naturalistic, and goal-directed tablet-based task and complementary analysis protocol designed to characterize the motor features of PD.
Methods: A total of 26 patients with PD and without deep brain stimulation (DBS), 20 control subjects, and eight patients with PD and with DBS completed the task. Eight metrics, each designed to capture an aspect of motor dysfunction in PD, were calculated from 1-second, non-overlapping epochs of the raw positional and pressure data captured during task completion. These metrics were used to generate a classifier using a support vector machine (SVM) model to produce a unifying, scalar “motor error score” (MES). The data generated from these patients with PD were compared to same-day standard clinical assessments. Additionally, these data were compared to analogous data generated from a separate group of 12 patients with essential tremor (ET) to assess the task's specificity for different movement disorders. Finally, an SVM model was generated for each of the eight patients with PD and with DBS to differentiate between their motor dysfunction in the “DBS On” and “DBS Off” stimulation states.
Results: The eight metrics calculated from the raw positional and force data captured during task completion were non-redundant. MES generated by the SVM analysis protocol showed a strong correlation with MDS-UPDRS-III scores assigned by movement disorder specialists. Analysis of the relative contributions of each of the eight metrics showed a significant difference between the motor dysfunction of PD and ET. Much of this difference was attributable to the homogenous, tremor-dominant phenotype of ET motor dysfunction. Finally, in individual patients with PD with DBS, task performance and subsequent SVM classification effectively differentiated between the “DBS On” and “DBS Off” stimulation states.
Conclusion: This tablet-based task and analysis protocol correlated strongly with expert clinical assessments of PD motor dysfunction. Additionally, the task showed specificity for PD when compared to ET, another common movement disorder. This specificity was driven by the relative heterogeneity of motor dysfunction of PD compared to ET. Finally, the task was able to distinguish between the “DBS On” and “DBS Off” states within single patients with PD. This task provides temporally-precise and specific information about motor dysfunction in at least two movement disorders that could feasibly correlate to neural activity.