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James Parkinson noted: “A diseased state of the medulla spinalis, in that part which is contained in the canal, formed by the superior cervical vertebrae, and extending, as the disease proceeds, to the medulla oblongata . . .is the proximate cause.”1
In the late 19th century, because knowledge of the pathophysiology of the basal ganglia was imprecise, Gowers and others implicated the motor cortex as the source of Parkinson's disease. Edouard Brissaud (a neurologist's neurologist) in 1894 thought that the site of Parkinson's disease must be peduncular or subthalamic, rejecting prevalent theories that it was muscular or a neurosis. He reported a parkinsonian syndrome caused by a tuberculoma of the substantia nigra and concluded.2
“The locus niger might well be its anatomical substratum.”
In a …
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