Sign Up for a Free Account
  • Updated 06.07.2023
  • Released 03.20.2001
  • Expires For CME 06.07.2026

Imaging of movement disorders



Historically, imaging studies were used experimentally to expand our knowledge and understanding of the pathophysiology and genesis of movement disorders. More recently, a few of these imaging tools have become part of clinical practice. In this article, we will address some of the key finding across imaging modalities in Parkinson disease, essential tremor, Huntington disease, dystonia, and Tourette syndrome.

Key points

• Structural and functional imaging studies are increasing our understanding of the underlying pathophysiology of movement disorders and beginning to show some utility in their ability to aid diagnosis and inform treatment development.

• Neurochemical imaging can be used to visualize nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation in Parkinson disease and may allow for early diagnosis and monitoring of disease progression, whereas the structural and functional changes in Parkinson disease may enable the ability to differentiate between motor and cognitive subtypes and to distinguish the disease from atypical parkinsonian syndromes.

• Advanced imaging techniques can be used to characterize the altered structure and aberrant function present within tremor-related cerebellar pathways in essential tremor and may help elucidate the presence of different phenotypes of this common movement disorder.

• A variety of imaging modalities have shown promise in detection of structural, functional, and neurochemical changes in pre-manifest Huntington disease and could support the development of disease-modifying therapies for this devastating neurologic disease.

• Although application of a broad range of imaging approaches is expanding our knowledge of the structural and functional changes associated with dystonia, additional larger and better controlled studies are needed to unravel the complex physiology leading to this disabling disorder.

• Signaling pathway changes and the disruptions in motor, limbic, and cognitive circuit function that underlie the tics and other neuropsychiatric symptoms of Tourette syndrome may be able to be elucidated using modern neuroimaging techniques.

This is an article preview.
Start a Free Account
to access the full version.

  • Nearly 3,000 illustrations, including video clips of neurologic disorders.

  • Every article is reviewed by our esteemed Editorial Board for accuracy and currency.

  • Full spectrum of neurology in 1,200 comprehensive articles.

  • Listen to MedLink on the go with Audio versions of each article.

Questions or Comment?

MedLink®, LLC

3525 Del Mar Heights Rd, Ste 304
San Diego, CA 92130-2122

Toll Free (U.S. + Canada): 800-452-2400

US Number: +1-619-640-4660



ISSN: 2831-9125