Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s Disease: 
This slowly progressive, degenerative neurologic disorder. This disorder
is one of the most common crippling disorder in the US.  Deterioration
progresses for an average of 10 years, at which time secondary disorders
occurs such as pneumonia, aspiration or some other infection which can
lead to death.  Parkinson’s disease affects men more often than women.

Cause:  Uncertain.  Dopamine
deficiency prevents affected brain cells from performing their normal inhibitory
function within the central nervous system


Insidious tremor that begins in the fingers (unilateral
pill roll tremor), increases during stress or anxiety and decreases with
purposeful movement and sleep

Muscle rigidity causing resistance to passive
muscle stretching, which may be uniform or jerky

Difficulty walking (gait lacks normal parallel
motion and may be retropulsive or propulsive)

High-pitched monotone voice


Masklike facial expression with poor blink reflex
and wide-open eyes

Walks with body bent forward (loss of positive

Slurred speech

Oculogyric crises (eyes are fixed upward, with
involuntary tonic movements)

Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)


No cure at present

Treatment seeks to relieve symptoms and keep the
patient functional as long as possible.

Drug therapy

Physical therapy

Stereotactic neurosurgery