Medication meant to treat Parkinsons disease has been associated with sudden onset of phases of habitual gambling in people who were not gamblers otherwise.
The Mayo Clinic psychiatrists were behind the research that had shed light on such a link between gambling and the drug called dopamine agonists.
Parkinsons disease is a disorder of the nervous system. Some of its symptoms are muscle tremors, muscle rigidity, decreased mobility, stooped posture, slow voluntary movements, and a mask-like facial expression.
Researchers had learned about the gambling habit acquired by the patients of the disease during the routine visits that had made to the clinics for treatment. Researchers also found that the gambling behavior were either admitted by the patient with embarrassment or is admitted by the family members as a newly developed habit.
Researchers were then able to trace the common link between patients of Parkinson's disease with the newly acquired habit of gambling to the use of the drug carbidopa/ levodopa. One result of the research was also that the patients seem to come out of this habit once they have stopped the use of the drug.
The researchers admitted that this is for the first time there had been evidence of drug induced gambling behavior in people.
Reference: Archives of Neurology, July 2005, ,