About This Condition
Parkinson's disease is a progressive, degenerative neurological movement disorder that affects approximately 80,000 Australians.1 Although it is considerably more common in people over 60, but the number of people diagnosed at a younger age is increasing.2
As Parkinson's disease progresses, it becomes increasingly disabling, making daily activities like bathing or dressing difficult or impossible. Many of the symptoms of Parkinson's disease involve motor control, the ability to control your muscles and movement.
The four primary symptoms of Parkinson's disease are:
Parkinson's disease is caused by the degeneration of a small part of the brain called the substantia nigra. As brain cells in the substantia nigra die, the brain becomes deprived of the chemical dopamine.
Dopamine enables brain cells involved in movement control to communicate, and reduced levels of dopamine lead to the symptoms of Parkinson's disease. According to the National Parkinson Foundation, 60-80% of dopamine-producing cells are lost even before the motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease appear.3
Parkinson's disease often becomes increasingly disabling over time. If you suffer from Parkinson's disease you may have trouble performing daily activities such as rising from a chair or moving across a room. As the disease progresses, some people need to use a wheelchair or may become bedridden.
About Parkinson's Disease. Available at: www.parkinsonsnsw.org.au. Accessed March 22, 2017.
Basic Info About PD. American Parkinson Disease Association. www.apdaparkinson.org. Accessed March 22, 2017.
What is Parkinson's Disease? National Parkinson Foundation. www.parkinson.org. Accessed November 4, 2013.
This website is intended to be educational and is not to be used as a diagnostic tool. It is not intended to replace the information provided to you by your healthcare providers and does not constitute medical advice. The information may not be directly applicable for your individual clinical circumstance. Please talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.