Understanding Parkinsons Disease

Manglien Gangte, Team VOH

04 Jan,2018


Understanding Parkinsons Disease

 

Parkinson’s disease is a long-term progressive disorder of the brain that affects movement. It is estimated that seven million people in India suffer from this condition. But very few people understand why this happens.

 

This condition involves the death of neurons in a region of the brain that controls movement. Let’s look into Parkinson’s disease and its various treatment options. Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative condition of the brain that develops slowly over time. This disease occurs at the level of the brain cells specifically in the area of the brain called the substantia nigra. This area is very important in controlling your movement.

 

In Parkinson’s disease, the neurons in the substantia nigra begin to die and cannot produce the chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is an essential chemical that regulates movement and coordination in the brain. And a decrease in this chemical can cause the symptoms of Parkinson's disease.

 

Symptoms

  • Resting tremor – shaking of the hands at rest. This can happen with the legs, arms, and jaws as well.
  • Stiffness of joints
  • Changes in speech
  • Change in posture
  • Difficulty in walking

 

Parkinsons disease has multiple comorbid features:

  • Decrease or loss of the sense of smell (anosmia)
  • REM behavior disorder where people act out of a dream. Eg. Sleeptalking.
  • Comorbid restless leg syndrome
  • Comorbid Parkinson's disease psychosis which includes hallucinations such as visual hallucinations and delusions.

 

Treatment

Early diagnosis is important as medications can really help decrease the symptom of Parkinson's. But it is to be remembered that this is not the cure for it.

Deep brain stimulation surgery can be a very helpful option for those who have motor fluctuations. These include dyskinesias, which are the involuntary movements, reminiscents of dancing and also wearing all symptoms were prior to the next dose the patients leave it upon medication it starts to wear off.

The brain stimulation surgery provides a continuous electrical stimulation that aims to reduce this fluctuation. Latest research and innovations like focused ultrasound are being investigated by Europe and the US. Regular Physical Therapy and Focused Rehab helps in improving the quality of life. And you should discuss these options with your doctor.

 

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. 


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