Laterality of repetitive finger movement performance and clinical features of Parkinson's disease

Elizabeth Stegemöller, Andrew Zaman, Colum D. MacKinnon, Mark D. Tillman, Chris J. Hass, Michael S. Okun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Impairments in acoustically cued repetitive finger movement often emerge at rates near to and above 2 Hz in persons with Parkinson's Disease (PD) in which some patients move faster (hastening) and others move slower (bradykinetic). The clinical features impacting this differential performance of repetitive finger movement remain unknown. The purpose of this study was to compare repetitive finger movement performance between the more and less affected side, and the difference in clinical ratings among performance groups. Forty-one participants diagnosed with idiopathic PD completed an acoustically cued repetitive finger movement task while “on” medication. Eighteen participants moved faster, 10 moved slower, and 13 were able to maintain the appropriate rate at rates above 2 Hz. Clinical measures of laterality, disease severity, and the UPDRS were obtained. There were no significant differences between the more and less affected sides regardless of performance group. Comparison of disease severity, tremor, and rigidity among performance groups revealed no significant differences. Comparison of posture and postural instability scores revealed that the participants that demonstrated hastening had worse posture and postural instability scores. Consideration of movement rate during the clinical evaluation of repetitive finger movement may provide additional insight into varying disease features in persons with PD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)116-123
Number of pages8
JournalHuman Movement Science
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported in part by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) CTSA grant 1UL1RR029890 and by the National Parkinson’s Disease Foundation Center for Excellence at the University of Florida .

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier B.V.


  • Disease severity
  • Finger tapping
  • Rigidity
  • Tremor


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