Objective: Orthostatic tremor (OT) is an extremely rare, misdiagnosed, and underdiagnosed disorder affecting adults in midlife. There is debate as to whether it is a different condition or a variant of essential tremor (ET), or even, if both conditions coexist. Our objective was to use data mining classification methods, using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-derived brain volume and cortical thickness data, to identify morphometric measures that help to discriminate OT patients from those with ET. Methods: MRI-derived brain volume and cortical thickness were obtained from 14 OT patients and 15 age-, sex-, and education-matched ET patients. Feature selection and machine learning methods were subsequently applied. Results: Four MRI features alone distinguished the two, OT from ET, with 100% diagnostic accuracy. More specifically, left thalamus proper volume (normalized by the total intracranial volume), right superior parietal volume, right superior parietal thickness, and right inferior parietal roughness (i.e., the standard deviation of cortical thickness) were shown to play a key role in OT and ET characterization. Finally, the left caudal anterior cingulate thickness and the left caudal middle frontal roughness allowed us to separate with 100% diagnostic accuracy subgroups of OT patients (primary and those with mild parkinsonian signs). Conclusions: A data mining approach applied to MRI-derived brain volume and cortical thickness data may differentiate between these two types of tremor with an accuracy of 100%. Our results suggest that OT and ET are distinct conditions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology