Pergolide monotherapy in the treatment of early PD: a randomized, controlled study. Pergolide Monotherapy Study Group.

PMID 10449123


To determine whether pergolide monotherapy provides symptomatic relief in early PD. Early treatment with dopamine agonists may reduce the risk of motor fluctuations, which are most likely linked to levodopa therapy. Pergolide, a D1-D2 dopamine agonist, has been studied as "add on" therapy in PD, but no controlled clinical trial studying the efficacy of pergolide monotherapy is available. The efficacy and tolerability of pergolide were evaluated in a multicenter, double-blind, randomized, parallel-group, 3-month trial versus placebo. Patients with a diagnosis of idiopathic PD, a modified Hoehn & Yahr score of 1 to 3, and a score greater than 14 points on the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) part III at baseline were enrolled in the study (pergolide, n = 53; placebo, n = 52). Patient characteristics at study entry were comparable in the two study groups. The pergolide group showed a significantly greater percent of responders (defined as a -30% decrease in UPDRS part III score at end point) compared with placebo (57% versus 17%; p < 0.001). Pergolide-treated patients experienced a significantly greater improvement than placebo-treated patients (p < 0.001) in UPDRS (overall, part II, and part III) score, Schwab & England score, and Clinical Global Impression improvement score. By the study end the mean dose of pergolide was 2.06 mg/day. Six patients in the pergolide group versus two patients in the placebo group discontinued the study because of treatment emergent side effects. This study suggests that pergolide monotherapy may be an efficacious and well-tolerated first-line treatment in patients with early-stage PD.

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Pergolide mesylate salt, ≥98%, solid
C19H26N2S · CH4O3S