Both developmental and acquired stuttering are related to the function of the basal ganglia-thalamocortical loop, which includes the putamen. Here, we present a case of stuttering- and palilalia-like dysfluencies that manifested as an early symptom of multiple system atrophy-parkinsonian type (MSA-P) and bilateral atrophy of the putamen. The patient was a 72-year-old man with no history of developmental stuttering who presented with a stutter for consultation with our otorhinolaryngology department. The patient was diagnosed with MSA-P based on parkinsonism, autonomic dysfunction, and bilateral putaminal atrophy revealed by T2-weighted magnetic resonance imaging. Treatment with levodopa improved both the motor functional deficits related to MSA-P and stuttering-like dysfluencies while reading; however, the palilalia-like dysfluencies were much less responsive to levodopa therapy. The patient died of aspiration pneumonia two years after his first consultation at our hospital. In conclusion, adult-onset stuttering- and palilalia-like dysfluencies warrant careful examination of the basal ganglia-thalamocortical loop, and especially the putamen, using neuroimaging techniques. Acquired stuttering may be related to deficits in dopaminergic function.
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