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Inadequately Controlled Motor Fluctuations

Overview As Parkinson’s disease progresses, the response to levodopa becomes more complex and medication beneficial effects begin to wear off between doses.   The variations in mobility such that patients can tell when their medications kick in and wear off are referred to as motor fluctuations.  Although motor fluctuations can be very frustrating and disabling, there […]

Non-Motor Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease

Often non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease can be overlooked and thought to be unassociated with PD, especially in the early stages of the disease. However, there are a variety of non-motor symptoms that can affect up to 50% of the PD population. Two of the major non-motor symptoms include cognitive changes and mood disorders. Cognitive […]

Overview of Motor Symptoms

The most common motor symptoms of PD include tremor (occurring at rest), slowness of movements (bradykinesia), rigidity of movements in the limbs, trunk, and neck, and reduced balance. PD is a progressive neurological condition so symptoms, including motor symptoms, worsen over time. Tremor – Around 80% of PD patients have a tremor or will develop one. […]

Atypical Parkinsonism & PSP

Atypical – Atypical Parkinsonism is a term used to cover a variety of neurodegenerative disorders in which parkinsonism occurs usually in conjunction with other signs not seen in PD.   About 15-20% of patients presenting with parkinsonism have a form of an atypical parkinsonism. The common causes of atypical parkinsonism include: Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP) Multiple […]

Causes of Parkinson’s Disease

The cause of Parkinson’s disease is unknown, however there are a number of genetic and environmental factors being studied as risk factors for the disease. Currently about 5- 10% of PD cases are thought to be monogenic and due to single mutations in genes known to be strongly causative for familial PD such as LRRK2, […]

Basic Science of Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by cell (neuronal) death of dopamine-producing cells. The area in the brain with the most substantial degeneration is called the substantia nigra, which is one of the main sources of dopamine for the brain. When Parkinson’s motor symptoms arise, at least 50% of the neurons in the substantia […]