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Parkinson’s disease

Last updated on : 16 May, 2024

Read time : 8 min

Parkinson’s disease is a brain disorder that makes people shake, stiffen up, and have trouble keeping their balance and moving in sync.

Usually, symptoms start slowly and get worse over time. People may have trouble walking and talking as the disease gets worse. They may also have changes in their thinking and behaviour, trouble sleeping, depression, trouble remembering things, and tiredness.

Parkinson’s could happen to almost anyone, but it shows that more men than women get this disease. Age is one clear risk: Most people with Parkinson’s get sick for the first time after they turn 60, but 5 to 10 per cent get sick before they turn 50. Early-onset Parkinson’s is often inherited, but not always, and certain gene mutations have been linked to some forms.

Parkinson’s disease Symptoms

Some of the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease can start years before the major problems start to show up.

Among these early signs are:

  • the ability to smell has become less effective (anosmia)
  • constipation
  • Tiny, scrawled handwriting
  • During the speech, the voice changes.
  • a stooped body language

Four of the most common major problems that people have are:

  • movement or shake (shaking that occurs at rest)
  • In slow motions, things move more slowly
  • stiffness in the arms, legs, and trunk of a person
  • a bad sense of balance and a tendency to fall over

Secondary Parkinson’s symptoms include things like:

  • expression with no expression on the face
  • getting stuck while walking is something that happens a lot
  • murky and low-pitched language
  • blinking and swallowing have become less common.
  • inclination to go backwards
  • reduction in the arm, as someone walks, they swing their arms in the air.

A Parkinsonian gait is when someone walks with shuffling steps instead of steady steps:

  • These aren’t the only things that could be caused by this.
  • flakes of white or yellow scales that appear on parts of the skin that are oily, or seborrheic dermatitis.
  • more likely to get very bad skin cancer, such as melanoma
  • some things make it hard for people to sleep, like vivid dreams, talking, and moving during sleep.
  • depression
  • anxiety
  • hallucinations
  • psychosis
  • When you can’t pay attention or remember,
  • visual-spatial relationships are hard for me to figure out

In the early stages of Parkinson’s disease, some symptoms may not be seen. There might be warning signs in your body for a long time before you start having problems with your movement, like aches and pains in your body.

Parkinson’s disease causes

Parkinson’s disease is not known for sure. If it is genetic and environmental, it may be the cause. Others think viruses can also cause Parkinson’s disease and that this is true as well.

  • Having low levels of dopamine and the substance that regulates dopamine have been linked to Parkinson’s.
  • People with Parkinson’s also have a group of proteins called Lewy bodies in their brains. If Lewy bodies play any part in the development of Parkinson’s disease, scientists don’t know what that role is or how important it is to study them.

It’s not clear what causes the condition, but there are groups of people who are more likely to have it:

  • Sex: Men are 1.5 times more likely to get Parkinson’s than women.
  • Race: According to a lot of research, this is how it looks White people are more likely to get Parkinson’s than Black or Asian people, says a trusted source. People may be more likely to get hurt because they live in a certain place.
  • Age: In most cases, Parkinson’s starts to show up in people who are between 50 and 60 years old. Most of the time, it happens before the age of 40 about 4% of the time.
  • The history of my family: They are more likely to get Parkinson’s. if they have a close relative who has Parkinson’s disease as well, too.
  • Toxins: It may be more likely for people to get Parkinson’s disease if they have been exposed to certain toxins, like lead.
  • Injuries to the head, or head: In people who have head injuries, may be more likely to get Parkinson’s disease.

People get Parkinson’s every year, and each year, scientists try to figure out why. You can find out more about what has been found and what is known about Parkinson’s risk factors here.

Parkinson’s disease treatment and its medication

There are a lot of different drugs that can be used to treat Parkinson’s disease below some of them are mentioned:

Levodopa

People with Parkinson’s disease treatment usually take levodopa, which is the most common way to treat it. It helps to replenish the dopamine that has been used up by other things. About 75% of people who take levodopa get better, but not all of their symptoms get better. With levodopa, carbidopa is most often used.

Carbidopa slows down the breakdown of levodopa, which means that more levodopa is available at the blood-brain barrier, where it can reach the brain. before taking these medications consult your doctor.

Dopamine agonists

Dopamine agonists can act like dopamine in the brain, so they can make you feel good. They aren’t as good as levodopa, but they can be useful as bridge medications when levodopa doesn’t work as well. The medicine is recommended by a doctor then you can have the dose.

Anticholinergics

These drugs are used to stop the parasympathetic nervous system from firing. They can help you be more rigid. A drug called benztropine (Cogentin) and a drug called trihexyphenidyl, which is both anticholinergics, are used to treat Parkinson’s and is recommended by doctors.

Amantadine

Symmetrel, which has amantadine in it, can be used with carbidopa-levodopa. I think it’s a drug that stops the body from getting too much glutamate (NMDA). For a short time, it helps with dyskinesia, which can happen as a side effect of levodopa. Before taking medicine consult your doctor.

COMT

Inhibitors of Catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) make levodopa work longer. Entacapone (Comtan) and tolcapone (Tasmar) are two COMT inhibitors that people can take.

Tolcapone can damage your liver. better with other treatments, so this is usually the last one they try.

Entacapone does not harm the liver. Stalevo is a pill that has both entacapone and carbidopa-levodopa in it at the same time. So the doctor will recommend you this medicine.

MAO-B blockers

Inhibitors of monoamine oxidase B, MAO-B, stop the enzyme from working. This enzyme breaks down the brain’s dopamine, which makes you feel good. An example of an MAO-B inhibitor is Eldepryl, which is also called rasagiline (Azilect).

Before taking any other medicines that have MAO-B inhibitors, talk to your doctor about it first. They can interact with a lot of different drugs, like:

  • antidepressant
  • ciprofloxacin

There is a chance that the effectiveness of Parkinson’s disease medicines will go down over time. When someone has late-stage Parkinson’s, the side effects of some medications may be more important than the benefits that they have. However, they may still be able to manage the symptoms well enough. The doctor only recommends you these types of medicine please don’t take it without consultation.

Therapies

  1. Amplitude training

Amplitude training is a type of physical therapy used to treat bradykinesia and hypokinesia. Bradykinesia is a slowing down of movement and one of the main signs of Parkinson’s disease. Hypokinesia means small movements and is another common symptom of Parkinson’s disease.

In amplitude training, patients practise making big movements, such as swinging their arms or taking big steps. This type of therapy helps retrain your muscles and keeps you from making small, slow movements.

2. Reciprocal movements

Reciprocal movements happen at the same time but in opposite directions. For example, spinning your arms as you walk is a reciprocal movement. Parkinson’s disease can make it hard to move back and forth, which can make it hard to stay balanced, but physical therapy can help.

Your physical therapist may have you use a stationary bike or elliptical machine to strengthen reciprocal patterns. They might also suggest that you practise reciprocal movements on your own by focusing on swinging your arms as you walk. Dancing and tai chi can also help improve your ability to move.

3. Balance training

Your brain uses information from your eyes, ears, muscles, and joints to keep your body balanced. Parkinson’s disease can affect your sense of balance, making it hard to walk steadily. If you have trouble keeping your balance, your physical therapist can add balance training to your exercise routine and guide you on things you can do at home. Balance training is usually an important part of treating Parkinson’s disease because it improves walking and keeps people from falling.

4. Stretching

Stretching makes people with Parkinson’s disease more flexible and reduces the stiffness of their muscles. For everyday activities like walking, bending, and lifting, you need to be flexible. Stretching exercises can make you more flexible, which can make it easier to get out of bed, put on clothes, pick things up off the floor, and do other things. You can tell your physical therapist what part of your flexibility you want to work on, and they will show you stretches that target those muscles.

In Parkinson’s disease, the muscles that move joints tend to tighten. Because of these in  stretching routine mainly focuses on these areas:

  • Shoulder and elbow
  • Calves
  • Knees and hamstrings
  • Palms and wrists
  • Backside
  • Neck
  • Back wall

You can do the stretches your physical therapist shows you several times a day to loosen up your muscles.

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Our healthcare experts have carefully reviewed and compiled the information presented here to ensure accuracy and trustworthiness. It is important to note that this information serves as a general overview of the topic and is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, prevent, or cure any health problem. This page does not establish a doctor-patient relationship, nor does it replace the advice or consultation of a registered medical practitioner. We recommend seeking guidance from your registered medical practitioner for any questions or concerns regarding your medical condition.

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