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This site is dedicated to my husband, Rick, who at age 57, has been dealing with Parkinson's Disease for the last 12 years and to all other Parkinsonians in the world. This page is also dedicated to all the caregivers, myself included, who have tried to make their Parkinsonian's life a little easier with this debilitating neurological illness. The bright spot in all of this is that life doesn't stop just because one has Parkinson's, it just gets a bit slower.

I have listed below links to various Parkinson's sites on the internet. Hopefully, these will prove useful and informative to you, whether you're new to the experience of Parkinson's Disease or have been dealing with it for years.

This site will no longer be updated. Rick passed away on Nov. 29, 2005 at the age of 57.



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Parkinson's Disease: An Overview

Parkinson's disease (PD) is a disorder of the central nervous system that affects between one and one-and-a-half million Americans. Because it is not contagious and does not have to be reported by physicians, the incidence of the disease is often underestimated.

PD may appear at any age, but it is uncommon in people younger than 30, and the risk of developing it increases with age. It occurs in all parts of the world, and men are affected slightly more often than women.

PRIMARY SYMPTOMS

Following is a list of the primary symptoms of Parkinson's disease. It is important to note that not all patients experience the full range of symptoms; in fact, most do not.

RIGIDITY is an increased tone or stiffness in the muscles. Unless it is temporarily eased by anti-Parkinson's medications, rigidity is always present. However, it increases during movement. It is often responsible for a mask-like expression of the face. In some patients, rigidity leads to sensations of pain, especially in the arms and shoulders.

TREMOR is the symptom the public most often identifies with PD, but in fact, up to 25% of patients experience very slight tremor or none at all. When it is present, the tremor may be worse on one side of the body. Besides affecting the limbs, it sometimes involves the head, neck, face, and jaw.

BRADYKINESIA means slowness of movement. This symptom is characterized by a delay in initiating movements, caused by the brain's slowness in transmitting the necessary instructions to the appropriate parts of the body. When the instructions have been received, the body responds slowly in carrying them out.

POOR BALANCE tends to affect people with PD. This is particularly true when they move abruptly, causing a sudden change in the position of their bodies. Some patients experience repeated falls due to poor balance. Walking problems commonly include a decreased or non-existent arm swing; short, shuffling steps (festination); difficulty in negotiating turns; and sudden freezing spells (inability to take the next step).



SECONDARY SYMPTOMS

People with Parkinson's may also suffer from any of a long list of secondary symptoms. These include depression, sleep disturbances, dizziness, stooped posture, constipation, dementia, and problems with speech, breathing, swallowing, and sexual function. Again, it is important to note that different patients experience different symptoms.

This description and definition of Parkinson's Disease was taken from the Parkinson Disease Foundation on line page. (Just click on the name to go there.)



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DISCLAIMER

I do not claim to be the creator and/or owner of any of the sites listed below. They were all found on the internet and are listed here to be a source of information and reference only.



Parkinson Disease Foundation

National Parkinson Foundation

American Parkinson Disease Association

Young Parkinson Information & Referral Center

Awakenings

Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's Disease - Home Page

The Parkinson's Web

The Mulligan Foundation

World Parkinson Disease Association



Sites/References for Caregivers


Parkinson Disease Caregivers Information

NFCA
(National Family Caregivers Association)

Welcome to CARE

The Caregiver's Role:
A Balancing Act

Caring



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