Early in the course of Parkinson disease (PD), treatment usually goes well. However, after five to ten years, things start to change as treatment requires higher doses of medications and side effects become more problematic. One of the most difficult problems is the development of hallucinations or delusions. Throughout the 20th century, treatment options were unproven and unsatisfactory, but the past 20 years have brought important changes. Two medications that are well tolerated in PD have now proved efficacious in randomized, controlled trials, and others are in development.
Here I summarize this history briefly and provide a general plan for treating the patient with PD complicated by psychotic symptoms.