Commonly endorsed Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) items may reflect motor symptoms in Parkinson disease (PD) such as tremor instead of, or in addition to, genuine mood symptoms, a recent study found. These findings highlight the importance of considering motor symptoms in the assessment of anxiety in PD and point to the need for selecting anxiety measures that are less subject to contamination by the motor effects of movement disorders. 100 individuals with PD and without dementia and 74 healthy controls completed the BAI. PD motor symptoms were assessed by the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). Researchers found:
- BAI scores were significantly higher for PD than for normal controls (NC).
- A 5-item PD motor factor correlated with UPDRS observer-rated motor severity and mediated the PD-control difference on BAI total scores.
- An interaction occurred, whereby removal of the PD motor factor resulted in a significant reduction in BAI scores for PD relative to NC.
Salazar RD, Le AM, Neargarder S, Cronin-Golumb A. The impact of motor symptoms on self-reported anxiety in Parkinson's disease. [Published online ahead of print January 24, 2017]. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. doi:10.1016/j.parkreldis.2017.01.011.