Management of “Off” Episodes in Parkinson Disease: Novel Advancements From 2022 American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting

meeting insights

From April 2nd to 7th, 2022, clinicians gathered in Seattle, Washington, for the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) 2022 Annual Meeting. Participants also had the option to attend virtually from April 24th to 26th. Over 2000 abstracts were submitted for this year’s conference.

Michael S. Okun, MD, has served as the National Medical Director for the Parkinson Foundation since 2006 and is a professor, the chair of neurology, and the executive director of the Norman Fixel Institute for Neurological Diseases at the University of Florida Health in Gainesville.

Dr. Okun provides key takeaways from the most recent research presented at AAN 2022 on the progress made to manage “off” episodes in the treatment of Parkinson disease (PD), a period of time when the benefit of an individual dose of levodopa begins to wane, and symptoms reemerge.1

While levodopa has robust efficacy and demonstrated tolerability, almost all patients will develop “off” episodes. “Off” episodes progressively become more frequent and unexpected, last longer, and can become more abrupt in onset. Several strategies have been developed and approved as adjunct therapies to reduce “off” episodes.2 More than 20 medications or surgical procedures are available or in development to address motor fluctuations in PD.