Few detailed clinico-pathological correlations of Parkinson's disease have been published. The pathological findings in 100 patients diagnosed prospectively by a group of consultant neurologists as having idiopathic Parkinson's disease are reported. Seventy six had nigral Lewy bodies, and in all of these Lewy bodies were also found in the cerebral cortex. In 24 cases without Lewy bodies, diagnoses included progressive supranuclear palsy, multiple system atrophy, Alzheimer's disease, Alzheimer-type pathology, and basal ganglia vascular disease. The retrospective application of recommended diagnostic criteria improved the diagnostic accuracy to 82%. These observations call into question current concepts of Parkinson's disease as a single distinct morbid entity.