Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP): general pathology and visual signs and symptoms

Richard A. Armstrong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a rare, degenerative disorder of the brain believed to affect between 1.39 and 6.6 individuals per 100,000 of the population. The disorder is likely to be more common than suggested by these data due to difficulties in diagnosis and especially in distinguishing PSP from other conditions with similar symptoms such as multiple system atrophy (MSA), corticobasal degeneration (CBD), and Parkinson’s disease (PD). PSP was first described in 1964 by Steele, Richardson and Olszewski and originally called Steele-Richardson-Olszewski syndrome. The disorder is the second commonest syndrome in which the patient exhibits ‘parkinsonism’, viz., a range of problems involving movement most typically manifest in PD itself but also seen in PSP, MSA and CBD. Although primarily a brain disorder, patients with PSP exhibit a range of visual clinical signs and symptoms that may be useful in differential diagnosis. Hence, the present article describes the general clinical and pathological features of PSP, its specific visual signs and symptoms, discusses the usefulness of these signs in differential diagnosis, and considers the various treatment options.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-52
Number of pages5
JournalOptometry Today
Volume2007
Issue numberMarch
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2007

Keywords

  • progressive supranuclear palsy
  • diagnosis
  • symptoms
  • multiple system atrophy
  • corticobasal degeneration
  • and Parkinson’s disease
  • visual clinical signs
  • differential diagnosis
  • treatment

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