Mortality Rates in Parkinson’s Disease and Their Association with Disease Duration

Pavankumar Kamat


September 01, 2021


  • Mortality rates in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) in the UK increased slightly between 2006 and 2016, but they gradually increased year on year with advancing disease.

  • Overall, mortality rates decreased in patients with PD over 10 years, but this reduction was less pronounced than that in the general population.

Why this matters

  • Findings suggest that progression of PD is associated with increasing mortality, and reduction in mortality will require treatments to address the underlying disease progression, complications and associated comorbidities.

Study design

  • A study of 10,104 patients with a first diagnosis of PD who received ≥2 prescriptions of any antiparkinsonian drug actively registered within a general practice and 55,664 matched control participants from The Health Improvement Network (THIN; 2006-2016) database.

  • Funding: None.

Key results

  • After adjustment for confounders, the overall mortality rate was slightly increased in the PD vs control group (adjusted rate ratio, 1.14; 95% CI, 1.09-1.20; P<.001).

  • Adjusted mortality rates per 1000 person-years were lower in patients with PD vs control group in the year following diagnosis, but mortality rates gradually increased with each year from 43 (95% CI, 38-48) per 1000 person-years in the first year to 75 (95% CI, 64-85) per 1000 person-years at 5 years after diagnosis.

  • After adjustment for confounders, overall mortality rates declined more slowly over 10 years in patients with PD (2% per year or 1.2 per 1000 person-years) vs the control group (5% per year or 2.4 per 1000 person-years).


  • The study cannot rule out the underdiagnosis of PD.

  • Misclassification of PD cases.


Okunoye O, Horsfall L, Marston L, Walters K, Schrag A. Mortality of People with Parkinson's Disease in a Large UK-Based Cohort Study: Time Trends and Relationship to Disease Duration. Mov Disord. 2021 Aug 05 [Epub ahead of print]. doi: 10.1002/mds.28727. PMID: 34351000.  View full text

This clinical summary originally appeared on Univadis, part of the Medscape Professional Network.


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