Visual hallucinations in dementia with Lewy bodies: a transcranial magnetic stimulation study

Taylor, John-Paul; Firbank, Michael; Barnett, Nicola; Pearce, Sarah; Livingstone, Anthea; Mosimann, Urs; Eyre, Janet; McKeith, Ian G; O’Brien, John T (2011). Visual hallucinations in dementia with Lewy bodies: a transcranial magnetic stimulation study. British journal of psychiatry, 199(6), pp. 492-500. London: Royal College of Psychiatrists 10.1192/bjp.bp.110.090373

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BACKGROUND: The aetiology of visual hallucinations is poorly understood in dementia with Lewy bodies. Pathological alterations in visual cortical excitability may be one contributory mechanism. AIMS: To determine visual cortical excitability in people with dementia with Lewy bodies compared with aged-matched controls and also the relationship between visual cortical excitability and visual hallucinations in dementia with Lewy bodies. METHOD: Visual cortical excitability was determined by using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) applied to the occiput to elicit phosphenes (transient subjective visual responses) in 21 patients with dementia with Lewy bodies and 19 age-matched controls. RESULTS: Phosphene parameters were similar between both groups. However, in the patients with dementia with Lewy bodies, TMS measures of visual cortical excitability correlated strongly with the severity of visual hallucinations (P = 0.005). Six patients with dementia with Lewy bodies experienced visual hallucination-like phosphenes (for example, seeing people or figures on stimulation) compared with none of the controls (P = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Increased visual cortical excitability in dementia with Lewy bodies does not appear to explain visual hallucinations but it may be a marker for their severity.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Geriatric Psychiatry and Psychotherapy

UniBE Contributor:

Mosimann, Urs Peter

ISSN:

0007-1250

Publisher:

Royal College of Psychiatrists

Language:

English

Submitter:

Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:18

Last Modified:

13 Dec 2014 06:16

Publisher DOI:

10.1192/bjp.bp.110.090373

PubMed ID:

22016436

Web of Science ID:

000298440500013

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.5745

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/5745 (FactScience: 210556)

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