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A multicenter randomized crossover multiple-dose comparison study of arotinolol and propranolol in essential tremor.

Author(s): Lee KS, Kim JS, Kim JW, Lee WY, Jeon BS, Kim D

Affiliation(s): College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Kangnam St Mary Hospital, 505 Banpo-dong Seochu-Ku, 137-701 Seoul, South Korea. ks1007@cmc.cuk.ac.kr

Publication date & source: 2003-08, Parkinsonism Relat Disord., 9(6):341-7.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Multicenter Study; Randomized Controlled Trial

BACKGROUND: A new medication is needed to treat essential tremor. Preliminary evidence suggests that arotinolol may be effective in the treatment of this disorder. OBJECTIVE: To study the effect of arotinolol and propranolol in a crossover, multiple dose comparative trial of patients with essential tremor. PATIENTS AND METHODS: One hundred and seventy-five outpatients, with essential tremor were included in the study; 161 patients completed the study. Patients were identically evaluated at eight consecutive visits. The study consisted of two treatments, which were arranged according to a crossover design that evaluated the dose of each (arotinolol 10 mg per day and propranolol 40 mg per day, arotinolol 20 mg per day and propranolol 80 mg per day, arotinolol 30 mg per day and propranolol 160 mg per day). Each course of treatment lasted 6 weeks. Major outcome evaluations consisted of a self-reported disability scale, and motor performance score obtained before drug intake and 14 days after each treatment. The treatment effects were evaluated by analysis of variance using the Hills-Armitage test. RESULTS: Arotinolol was found to be as effective as propranolol at reducing tremor. Drug effects as evaluated using motor-task performance scores revealed that arotinolol had a more significant effect than propranolol. CONCLUSIONS: Arotinolol may be more useful than propranolol for the treatment of essential tremor.

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