Parkinson's disease (PD) profoundly affects activities of daily living (ADL) and quality of human life. Although unilateral pallidotomy has become a common surgical treatment for persons with advanced PD, functional outcome data from previous reports have failed to uniformly support this procedure. In the present investigation, results from 12 studies meeting specific inclusion criteria were subjected to meta-analysis. Only reports featuring unilateral pallidotomy as the exclusive surgery, a sample size of at least five patients, explicit assessment of ADL, and sufficient quantitative data were subjected to analysis. Type of research design was not a factor in the selection process. The results of our analysis suggest that unilateral pallidotomy successfully enhances functional outcome in patients with clinically advanced PD.
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