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Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a long-term disorder in which
regions of the brain are gradually affected.
Parkinson’s disease is a long-term disorder in which regions of the brain are gradually affected.
SYMPTOMSCAUSES  |  DIAGNOSIS  |  STAGES  |  TREATMENTS  | LIVING WITH |  SUMMARY 

Understanding Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a neurological condition that causes tremors, stiffness, and difficulty walking, balancing, and coordinating. A woman in her eighties and her caretaker

Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease normally appear gradually and worsen over time. People with Parkinson’s disease may have difficulties walking and speaking as the disease develops. They may also have mental and behavioural changes, as well as sleep issues, depression, memory problems, and exhaustion.

Parkinson’s disease can affect both males and women. However, men are affected by the condition to a greater extent than women.

The age of a person is a clear risk factor for Parkinson’s disease. Although the majority of people with Parkinson’s disease develop the disease around the age of 60, about 5 to 10% of persons with Parkinson’s disease develop it before the age of 50. Parkinson’s disease is generally inherited, although not always, and some kinds have been linked to specific gene alterations.

Parkinson’s disease is thought to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. However, it is unknown how much of an impact they have. The majority of instances are found in people who have no known family history of the disease.

Parkinson’s disease is uncommon in families. Parkinson’s disease is rarely passed down from parents to their children.

 

Symptoms of
Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson's Disease Symptoms

Symptoms of
Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a chronic and progressive disease, which means that symptoms worsen with time. There is a wide range of symptoms and severity of symptoms: some people become seriously incapacitated, while others simply have mild motor difficulties.

These are the main signs of Parkinson’s disease:

  • Tremor (trembling) in hands, arms, legs, jaw, or head
  • Slowed movement (bradykinesia)
  • Changes in speech
  • Impaired balance and coordination, sometimes leading to falls
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Loss of automatic movements
  • Writing changes
  • Constipation
  • A diminished sense of smell
  • REM-sleep behaviour disorder
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Low blood pressure when standing
  • Drooling
  • Increased urination urgency and frequency
  • Difficulty swallowing or eating
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Problems with eyesight
  • Slowed thinking
  • Impaired memory
  • Difficulty paying attention
  • Dementia

Depression and other mood changes, trouble eating, chewing, and speaking, bladder issues or constipation, skin problems, and sleep disruptions are all possible symptoms.

Individuals with Parkinson’s disease have different symptoms and progression rates. Early signs of Parkinson’s disease are often dismissed as the result of normal ageing. Because there are no medical tests that can conclusively detect the disease in the majority of instances, the correct diagnosis can be challenging.

Parkinson’s disease has mild early symptoms that develop over time. Affected persons may experience slight tremors or trouble getting out of a chair, for example. They may notice that they talk too softly, that their handwriting is slow and constricted, or that their handwriting is small and cramped. Friends and family members may be the first to notice changes in someone with Parkinson’s disease in its early stages. They may notice that the person’s face is expressionless and unanimated, or that an arm or leg is not moving regularly.

Parkinson’s disease patients frequently acquire a parkinsonian gait, which involves a proclivity to lean forward, small fast steps as if hurrying forward, and diminished arm swinging. They may also have difficulty initiating or maintaining movement.

Symptoms usually start on one side of the body, or even in one limb on one side. The sickness gradually affects both sides as it proceeds. However, symptoms on one side may be more severe than on the other.

Prior to experiencing stiffness and tremor, many patients with Parkinson’s say they had sleep issues, constipation, a diminished sense of smell, and restless legs.

Tremors

Tremors are unintended, rhythmic muscle movements that affect one or more body regions. Tremors are most common in the hands, however, they can also affect:

  • Arms
  • Head
  • Face
  • Voice
  • Torso
  • Legs

Tremor can be divided into two types: resting tremor and activity tremor. When muscles are relaxed, such as when your hands are in your lap, a resting tremor occurs, and it subsides during sleep or when the body part is used. The voluntary motions of a muscle cause action tremors.

Tremors usually affect only one side of the body, but as the condition advances, both sides may be affected. Tremors can be aggravated by fatigue, stress, and strong emotions.

Slowed movement (bradykinesia)

Bradykinesia, or sluggish movement, is a defining sign of Parkinson’s disease. It can appear in a variety of ways, including:

difficulties beginning motions such as standing up, slower automatic movements such as blinking, and general slowness in physical actions such as walking, as well as the illusion of “abnormal immobility” in facial expressions.

Changes in speech

People with Parkinson’s disease often suffer from speech and voice problems. Changes in the voice that make it sound quiet, monotonous, or hoarse are examples of these conditions.

People with Parkinson’s disease may not realise their voice is quiet and difficult to understand, and they may mistakenly believe they are shouting when they are truly speaking normally.

Impaired balance and coordination, sometimes leading to falls

The most difficult Parkinson’s symptom to treat is postural instability, which is also one of the most significant criteria for diagnosing Parkinson’s disease 1.

The difficulty to balance caused by a loss of postural reflexes is known as postural instability, and it frequently results in falls. Patients with poor posture and balance may adopt a stooped stance and shuffle their steps.

Rigidity of muscles

Muscle rigidity is a term that describes stiffness in the arms or legs. The rigidity can affect one or both sides of the body, limiting the range of motion and producing achiness or pain in the muscles and joints. 2.

Automatic movements are lost.

People with Parkinson’s disease frequently experience a gradual loss of automatic motions, which can result in less blinking, swallowing, and drooling.

Changes in writing

Micrographia, or small, cramped handwriting, is a common early symptom of Parkinson’s disease. As you continue to write, the size of your handwriting may shrink, and your signature may change.

Constipation

Having less than three bowel motions each week is considered constipation. Constipation often occurs before motor symptoms in persons with Parkinson’s disease.

Constipation in certain persons with Parkinson’s disease is thought to be caused by a malfunction of the autonomic nervous system, which regulates gut muscle activity and allows for bowel movements.

Reduced sense of smell

Hyposmia, or a loss of smell, is a common early symptom of Parkinson’s disease, typically occurring years before movement symptoms appear. It affects roughly 90% of those with early-stage Parkinson’s disease. 3.

REM-sleep behaviour disorder

REM-sleep behaviour disorder (RBD) is a sleep condition in which a person physically acts out vivid dreams during REM sleep by making sounds or making quick arm and leg movements. Among the signs and symptoms are:

kicking, punching, or flailing in the middle of the night

making yelling, chatting, or laughing noises

being able to recall dreams vividly

RBD frequently occurs before or after the onset of Parkinson’s disease, and it has been linked to the development of hallucinations and dementia.

According to one study 4, 66% of patients with RBD develop a neurodegenerative disease within 7.5 years, implying a substantial link between RBD and the likelihood of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s.

Anxiety and depression

Some persons who are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease may develop depression or anxiety disorders.

Some depression symptoms, such as sleep disturbances, low energy, and slowed thinking, overlap with Parkinson’s symptoms, making diagnosis difficult.

Depression and anxiety may appear before other Parkinson’s symptoms.

Low blood pressure when standing

When you shift from sitting to standing, or from laying down to sitting up or standing, your blood pressure drops. This is known as orthostatic hypotension (OH). It has the potential to cause:

dizziness

lightheadedness

weakness

inability to think

headache

feeling dizzy

A dip in systolic blood pressure of 20 millimetres of mercury or a drop in diastolic blood pressure of 10 millimetres is described as OH.

Drooling

Excessive drooling, also known as sialorrhea, is a typical sign of Parkinson’s disease. Automatic activities, such as swallowing, are typically difficult for people with Parkinson’s disease, resulting in saliva accumulating in the mouth.

When a person’s head is down, their mouth is held open unintentionally, or they are distracted and don’t swallow automatically, this can happen.

Increased urination urgency and frequency

Bladder issues are frequent in patients with Parkinson’s disease, affecting 30-40% of those who have the disease. A frequent and urgent need to urinate even when the bladder is empty, as well as difficulty delaying urinating, are the most typical urinary symptoms.

A less common symptom of Parkinson’s urinary dysfunction is difficulty emptying the bladder. The inability to relax the urethral sphincter muscles, which allow the bladder to drain, could be the cause.

Difficulty swallowing or eating

Parkinson’s disease affects the muscles that control speaking and swallowing in the face, mouth, and throat. Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing, is a Parkinson’s symptom that can make it difficult to eat.

Malnutrition, dehydration, and aspiration can occur when food or saliva “goes down the wrong pipe” and is inhaled into the lungs. Aspiration pneumonia, the major cause of death in Parkinson’s disease, can be caused via aspiration.

Erectile dysfunction

In persons with Parkinson’s disease, sexual dysfunction is widespread, with 54-79 percent of men experiencing erectile dysfunction 5. Erectile dysfunction is thought to be linked to Parkinson’s disease’s effects on the central nervous system, as well as problems with blood circulation and pelvic muscle control.

Erectile dysfunction

In persons with Parkinson’s disease, sexual dysfunction is widespread, with 54-79 percent of men experiencing erectile dysfunction 5. Erectile dysfunction is thought to be linked to Parkinson’s disease’s effects on the central nervous system, as well as problems with blood circulation and pelvic muscle control.

Problems with the eyesight

Although visual changes are prevalent as people age, some vision alterations may be linked to Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s disease can lead to the following symptoms:

  • As a result of decreased blinking, the eyes get dry.
  • Due to the incapacity of the eyes to operate together, you may experience double vision.
  • Reading difficulties
  • Closing of the eyes involuntarily
  • Having difficulty opening one’s eyes voluntarily

Some Parkinson’s drugs, notably anticholinergics, can induce a double vision or fuzzy vision.

Slowed thinking

In patients with Parkinson’s disease, cognitive impairment can range from feelings of distraction and difficulty planning tasks to more severe cognitive impairment that disrupts daily living.

Drops in dopamine, as well as alterations in acetylcholine and norepinephrine levels in the brain, are thought to be associated to cognitive deficits in Parkinson’s patients.

The following are signs of sluggish thinking:

  • Completing tasks more slowly
  • Having trouble recalling facts from memory
  • Response times to stimuli are delayed.

Impaired memory

With persons with Parkinson’s disease, the basal ganglia and frontal lobes of the brain, which aid in knowledge recall, may be impaired. This can cause difficulties with everyday chores such as using the phone or preparing a meal.

The “tip of the tongue” phenomenon occurs when people with Parkinson’s have problems recalling words.

Difficulty paying attention

People with Parkinson’s disease frequently have difficulties doing tasks that require concentration and attention. This makes it difficult to concentrate in situations that need divided attention, such as group discussions.

Dementia

Parkinson’s disease dementia can develop in some people with the disease. Dementia patients have long-term cognitive and motor impairments that have a substantial influence on their everyday lives.

Dementia is defined as a mental impairment that affects at least two brain functions. Mental illness can range from minor to severe, and it can alter one’s personality.

What Causes
Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson's Disease Causes

What Causes
Parkinson’s Disease?

When nerve cells in the basal ganglia, a part of the brain that controls movement, become damaged or die, Parkinson’s disease develops. These nerve cells, or neurons, normally create dopamine, an important brain neurotransmitter. When neurons die or become damaged, they produce less dopamine, resulting in Parkinson’s movement issues. Scientists are still unsure what causes dopamine-producing cells to die.

Parkinson's Disease - Pure Medical

Nerve endings that generate norepinephrine, the major chemical messenger of the sympathetic nervous system, which controls numerous bodily functions such as heart rate and blood pressure, are also lost in people with Parkinson’s disease. Some of the non-movement symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, such as fatigue, irregular blood pressure, decreased food movement through the digestive tract, and a sudden drop in blood pressure when a person stands up from a sitting or lying-down position, could be explained by the loss of norepinephrine.

Lewy bodies, peculiar clumps of the protein alpha-synuclein, are found in many brain cells of persons with Parkinson’s disease. Scientists are striving to learn more about alpha-normal synuclein’s and pathological roles, as well as its association to genetic abnormalities that cause Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia.

Although certain cases of Parkinson’s disease appear to be hereditary, and a few can be linked to specific genetic changes, the disease appears to strike at random and does not appear to run in families in the majority of cases. Many scientists now believe that Parkinson’s disease is caused by a combination of hereditary and environmental factors, including toxic exposure.

How is
Parkinson’s Disease
diagnosed?

Parkinson's Disease Diagnosis

How is Parkinson’s Disease diagnosed?

There are no tests that can definitively determine whether or not you have Parkinson’s disease. A diagnosis will be made based on your symptoms, medical history, and a thorough physical examination by your doctor.

Your doctor may discuss your concerns with you and may ask you to perform some easy mental or physical tasks, such as moving or walking about, to aid in the diagnosis.

Because symptoms are usually minor in the early stages, your doctor may have difficulty determining whether you have the condition.

Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease can be caused by a variety of conditions. Parkinsonism is a term used to describe people who have Parkinson’s-like symptoms that are caused by something other than Parkinson’s disease. While these illnesses may first be misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s disease, certain medical tests, as well as pharmacological therapy response, can assist identify them. Because many diseases have similar symptoms but require distinct treatments, it’s critical to get an accurate diagnosis as soon as possible.

There are currently no blood or laboratory tests available to diagnose Parkinson’s disease in nongenetic instances. A person’s medical history and a neurological examination are used to make a diagnosis. Another key feature of Parkinson’s disease is improvement after starting therapy.

Referral to a specialist

You’ll be referred to a specialist if your doctor detects Parkinson’s disease.

Typically, this will be:

  • A neurologist is a doctor who specialises in diseases of the brain and nervous system.
  • A geriatrician is a doctor who specialises in issues that affect the elderly.

The specialist will most likely ask you to do a series of physical activities so that they can determine if you have any movement issues.

If you experience at least two of the following three symptoms, you may have Parkinson’s disease:

  • The slowness of movement in a portion of your body that generally only shakes or trembles during rest (bradykinesia)
  • Stiffness of the muscles (rigidity)
  • It’s more likely that you have Parkinson’s disease if your symptoms improve after taking the drug levodopa.

Receiving the diagnosis

It can be emotionally tough to learn that you have Parkinson’s disease, and the news might be difficult to accept.

This means you’ll need the support of your family and a care team that can help you cope with the news.

Parkinson’s UK, the Parkinson’s support and research organisation, may be of assistance.

You can reach out to them at:

  • calling their free helpline on 0808 800 0303 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 7pm, and 10am to 2pm on Saturdays)
  • emailing hello@parkinsons.org.uk

Through a network of local groups, online resources, and a confidential helpline, Parkinson’s UK connects people with Parkinson’s disease, their carers, and their families.

The Parkinson’s UK website includes resources and assistance for people living with Parkinson’s disease.

Parkinson’s disease stages

Parkinson's Disease Stages

Parkinson’s disease stages

Parkinson’s is a progressive disease, which means that symptoms usually get worse with time.

To classify its stages, many doctors utilise the Hoehn and Yahr scale. This scale splits symptoms into five phases and aids healthcare providers in determining the severity of disease signs and symptoms.

1st stage

1st stage The mildest form of Parkinson’s disease is Parkinson’s disease. It’s so mild, in fact, that you might not notice any symptoms at all. They may not yet be interfering with your usual activities.

If you do experience symptoms, they could be limited to one side of your body.

2nd Stage

It might take months or even years to advance from stage 1 to stage 2. Each individual’s experience will be unique.

Symptoms that you may experience at this moderate stage include:

  • Muscle stiffness
  • Tremors
  • Changes in facial expressions
  • Trembling

Muscle stiffness can make regular tasks more difficult and take longer to complete. However, you’re unlikely to have any balancing issues at this point.

Both sides of the body may experience symptoms. It’s possible that changes in posture, stride, and facial expressions will be more visible.

3rd Stage

Symptoms have reached a tipping point in this stage. While you’re unlikely to develop new symptoms, your existing ones may become more evident. They may also obstruct your ability to do all of your regular tasks.

Movements are visibly slower, which causes activities to slow down. Falls become more common when balance disorders grow more serious. People with stage 3 Parkinson’s disease, on the other hand, may usually keep their independence and execute tasks without much help.

4th Stage

Significant changes occur as you advance from stage 3 to stage 4. Without a walker or other assistive device, standing will be quite difficult at this time.

Reactions and muscle movements also take a significant amount of time to slow down. Living alone can be insecure, if not downright dangerous.

5th Stage

Severe symptoms necessitate round-the-clock assistance in this advanced stage. It will be difficult, if not impossible, to keep your balance. It’s likely that a wheelchair will be necessary.

Individuals with Parkinson’s disease may also have disorientation, delusions, and hallucinations at this stage. These complications of the disease can appear at any time during the course of the disease.

 

Parkinson’s Disease
Treatments

Parkinson's Disease Treatments

Parkinson’s Disease Treatments

Although there is no cure for Parkinson’s disease, medications, surgical treatment, and other therapies can help to alleviate some of the symptoms.

Parkinson’s disease medications

Parkinson’s disease medications include:

  • Drugs that enhance dopamine levels in the brain
  • Drugs that impact the body’s other brain chemistry
  • Nonmotor symptom-controlling medications

Levodopa, also known as L-dopa, is the most common Parkinson’s treatment. To restore the brain’s diminishing supply of dopamine, nerve cells employ levodopa to create it. Levodopa is usually combined with another medicine called carbidopa. Carbidopa reduces the quantity of levodopa needed to treat symptoms and prevents or reduces some of the side effects of levodopa medication, such as nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure, and restlessness.

Parkinson’s patients should never discontinue taking levodopa without first consulting their physician. Stopping the medicine suddenly might have major consequences, such as being unable to move or having trouble breathing.

Other medications used to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease include:

  • Dopamine agonists drugs replicate the effects of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain.
  • MAO-B inhibitors are used to slow down the breakdown of dopamine in the brain.
  • COMT inhibitors are used to aid in the breakdown of dopamine.
  • Amantadine an antiviral medicine from the past, was used to lessen uncontrollable movements.
  • Anticholinergic medication to reduce tremors and muscle rigidity

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is a type of brain stimulation that

Deep brain stimulation, or DBS, may be useful for persons with Parkinson’s disease who do not respond well to treatments. DBS is a medical treatment in which electrodes are surgically implanted in a portion of the brain and are connected to a tiny electrical device implanted in the chest. Many of the movement-related symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, such as tremors, slowness of movement, and rigidity, can be alleviated by using the device and electrodes.

Other Treatments

Other therapies may be utilised to aid with the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. Physical, occupational, and speech therapy are among them, and they can help with gait and voice abnormalities, tremors and rigidity, and mental function decrease. A nutritious diet and exercises to strengthen muscles and enhance balance are some of the other supportive therapies.

Alternative and Complementary therapies used
when treating Parkinson’s Disease patients

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy may enhance neurological outcomes by boosting enzymes in the body that protect cells and prevent brain damage, according to research. In Parkinson’s disease patients, it has also been demonstrated to reduce depression, anxiety, and tremors 6, 7.

Cryotherapy

Auto-immune disorders, illness, trauma, and other sources of systemic and peripheral inflammation can all be reduced by whole-body cryotherapy. Cryotherapy can lower the risk of Parkinson’s disease by lowering the inflammatory burden throughout the body 8.

Ozone therapy

Ozone therapy is also regarded as a component of the new frontier in Parkinson’s symptom treatment and rehabilitation. Recent investigations have revealed that ozone therapy is helpful for both activating cerebral microcirculation and enhancing energy production by neurons 9.

Red Light Therapy

Red light therapy restores circadian rhythmicity effectively in the mood- and sleep-disturbed patients without Parkinson’s disease. The few studies that focused on the efficacy of Red light therapy in patients with Parkinson’s disease demonstrated a positive effect of Red light therapy not only on sleep and mood but also on motor function 10, 11.

Infrared Sauna therapy

Several recent research in animal models of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease have found that Infrared sauna therapy and low-level near-infrared light (NIr) therapy has neuroprotective effects, reducing the underlying death of neurons 12.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy outside the chamber

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy may enhance neurological outcomes by boosting enzymes in the body that protect cells and prevent brain damage, according to research. In Parkinson’s disease patients, it has also been demonstrated to reduce depression, anxiety, and tremors 6, 7.

Cryotherapy

Cryotherapy

Auto-immune disorders, illness, trauma, and other sources of systemic and peripheral inflammation can all be reduced by whole-body cryotherapy. Cryotherapy can lower the risk of Parkinson’s disease by lowering the inflammatory burden throughout the body 8.

Ozone Therapy

Ozone therapy

Ozone therapy is also regarded as a component of the new frontier in Parkinson’s symptom treatment and rehabilitation. Recent investigations have revealed that ozone therapy is helpful for both activating cerebral microcirculation and enhancing energy production by neurons 9.

Red Light Therapy

Red Light Therapy

Red light therapy restores circadian rhythmicity effectively in the mood- and sleep-disturbed patients without Parkinson’s disease. The few studies that focused on the efficacy of Red light therapy in patients with Parkinson’s disease demonstrated a positive effect of Red light therapy not only on sleep and mood but also on motor function 10, 11.

Infrared Sauna Therapy Mobile

Infrared Sauna therapy

Several recent research in animal models of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease have found that Infrared sauna therapy and low-level near-infrared light (NIr) therapy has neuroprotective effects, reducing the underlying death of neurons 12.

Living with
Parkinson’s disease

Pure Medical - Allergic rhinitis home remedies

Living with Parkinson’s disease

Parkinson’s disease is a life-changing diagnosis. To reduce your symptoms, you’ll require long-term treatment, and you may have to change how you accomplish ordinary daily tasks.

Although everyone’s experience with Parkinson’s disease is unique, there are many concerns and challenges that many people with the disease face.

If you’ve been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, you might find some of the suggestions below useful.

Maintaining good health

If you have Parkinson’s disease, it’s critical to do everything you can to maintain your physical and emotional health.

Exercise and a well-balanced diet

Regular exercise is especially beneficial for reducing muscle stiffness, increasing mood, and reducing stress.

You may stay fit by participating in a variety of activities, ranging from more intense sports like tennis and cycling to less rigorous ones like walking, gardening, and yoga.

You should also attempt to eat a well-balanced diet that includes foods from all food categories in order to provide your body with the nutrition it requires to be healthy.

Vaccinations

Every year in the autumn, everyone with a long-term condition is recommended to get a flu shot.

The pneumococcal vaccination, which is a one-time injection that protects against a deadly chest infection called pneumococcal pneumonia, is also commonly prescribed.

Do you want to learn more?

Consumption of nutritious foods

Fitness and health

Parkinson’s UK: Parkinson’s Disease and Diet

Parkinson’s UK: Parkinson’s disease and exercise

Relationships and Support

A long-term illness, such as Parkinson’s disease, can place a strain on you, your family, and your friends.

Even close friends and family members may find it difficult to talk about your illness.

Dealing with the worsening of symptoms, such as increased mobility difficulties, can leave you irritated and upset.

Inevitably, spouses, partners, or caregivers will be anxious or frustrated as well.

Tell your family and friends how you’re feeling and what they can do to help.

If you want some time to yourself, don’t be afraid to tell them.

Support

Your GP or a Parkinson’s disease specialist nurse may be able to answer any questions you have about your condition.

Talking to a skilled counsellor or psychologist, or someone on a dedicated helpline may also be beneficial. These can be found at your local GP’s office.

Some people feel that talking to other people with Parkinson’s disease, whether in a local support group or an online chat room, is beneficial.

Care and support assistance

It’s worthwhile to consider your individual requirements and what will assist you reach the highest possible quality of life.

Consider equipment, assistance in your house, and home adjustments, for example.

Find out more about:

What types of social services are available?

Choosing health-care providers

Home-based care services

Making preparations for your future healthcare need

Parkinson’s UK

Parkinson’s UK is the UK’s largest Parkinson’s support and research organisation.

If you have Parkinson’s disease, they can provide you with the support and advice you need, as well as information about support groups in your area.

You can reach out to them at:

  • calling their free helpline on 0808 800 0303 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 7pm, and 10am to 2pm on Saturdays)
  • emailing hello@parkinsons.org.uk

The Parkinson’s UK website also has all of the most up-to-date news, publications, and research updates, as well as an online community where you can discuss your Parkinson’s experiences.

Finances and work

You don’t have to quit working just because you’ve been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Many persons with the disease continue to work for years after being diagnosed.

If you have to stop working or work part-time due to your health, you may find it difficult to make ends meet financially.

However, you may be eligible for one or more of the following forms of financial assistance:

  • If you have a job but are unable to work due to illness, you are entitled to Statutory Sick Pay from your employer.
  • If you don’t have a job and are unable to work due to your sickness, you may be eligible for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).
  • If you’re 64 or younger and need help with personal care or have mobility issues, you might be eligible for Personal Independence Payment (PIP), which replaced Disability Living Allowance (DLA).
  • If you’re 65 or older, you might be eligible for Attendance Allowance.
  • If you’re caring for someone with Parkinson’s disease, you might be eligible for Carer’s Allowance.
  • If you have children at home or a low household income, you may be eligible for additional assistance.

Do you want to learn more?

Carer’s Allowance

GOV.UK: benefits

Financial Advice Services

Parkinson’s UK is a charity that helps people with Parkinson’s disease find work and raise money.

Driving

You must notify the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and your insurance company if you have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

You won’t have to stop driving if you don’t want to. You’ll be asked to fill out a form with additional information on your health, as well as the names and contact information of your doctors and experts.

This will be used by the DVLA to determine if you are fit to drive.

Do you want to learn more?

Driving with a disability or health condition, GOV.UK

Parkinson’s Disease in the United Kingdom (UK)

Palliative care with complex Parkinson’s disease

When medication fails to consistently manage symptoms or the person develops uncontrollable jerky movements, it is called complex Parkinson’s disease (disabling dyskinesia).

Under the supervision of a doctor with a special interest in Parkinson’s disease, these issues can still be improved by adjusting or adding some of the drugs used to treat Parkinson’s disease.

As your Parkinson’s disease advances, you’ll be invited to talk with your healthcare team about the type of care you want as you approach the end of your life. Palliative care is the term for this.

Palliative care aims to relieve symptoms and make the end of a person’s life as comfortable as possible when there is no treatment for an illness.

This is accomplished by seeking to alleviate pain and other painful symptoms while also offering you and your family psychological, social, and spiritual support.

Palliative care can be given at home, in a hospice, a nursing home, or a hospital.

You might want to chat with your family and care team ahead of time about where you’d like to be treated and what kind of care you want.

Do you want to learn more?

Palliative care can be accessed in a variety of ways.

End-of-life support

Parkinson’s UK: Parkinson’s disease (advanced)

Parkinson’s Disease Summary

Parkinson's Disease Summary

Parkinson’s Disease Summary

Experts are still unsure as to what causes Parkinson’s disease. It is a chronic illness that can be managed by dietary adjustments and medical treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms of Parkinson’s disease or have been diagnosed with the disease and are looking for innovative ways to manage it, speak with your doctor.