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Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is extensively used to treat motor and non-motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD). The aim of this study was to investigate the difference between subthalamic (STN) and globus pallidus internus (GPi) DBS on mood and quality of life with reference to minimal clinically important differences (MCID). A systematic literature search for articles published until November 2022 yielded 14 studies meeting the eligibility criteria, with a total of 1,088 patients undergoing STN (n=571) or GPi (n=517) stimulation. Baseline patient and clinical characteristics were comparable between the two groups. Results showed that GPi stimulation demonstrated a greater reduction in the Beck depression inventory (mean difference (MD)=1.68) than STN stimulation (MD=0.84). Hospital anxiety and depression scale showed a 2.69- and 3.48-point decrease by the GPi group in the depression and anxiety categories, respectively. The summary index (SI) of the PD questionnaire depicted a greater improvement in the GPi group from baseline (mean=41.01, 95% CI 34.89, 47.13) to follow-up (mean=30.85, 95% CI 22.08, 39.63) when compared to the STN group (baseline mean=42.43, 95% CI 34.50, 50.37; follow-up mean=34.21, 95% CI 25.43, 42.99). The emotions category also demonstrated a similar trend. However, STN stimulation showed greater reductions in motor symptoms and medication than GPi stimulation. This meta-analysis demonstrated that GPi stimulation seems to offer an advantage over STN stimulation in improving mood and quality of life in PD, but those effects must be further validated by larger studies.

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