Parkinson’s disease is a long-term degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system. The most obvious early symptoms are tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement, and difficulty with walking. Depression and anxiety are also common, occurring in more than a third of people with PD. In 2015, PD affected 6. 2 million people and resulted in about 117,400 deaths globally. There is no cure for PD; treatment aims to improve the symptoms.
About Parkinson’s disease in brief
Parkinson’s disease is a long-term degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system. The most obvious early symptoms are tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement, and difficulty with walking. Depression and anxiety are also common, occurring in more than a third of people with PD. Other symptoms include sensory, sleep, and emotional problems. In 2015, PD affected 6. 2 million people and resulted in about 117,400 deaths globally. The average life expectancy following diagnosis is between 7 and 15 years. There is no cure for PD; treatment aims to improve the symptoms. Initial treatment is typically with the medication levodopa, followed by dopamine agonists. As the disease progresses, these medications become less effective, while at the same time producing a side effect marked by involuntary muscle movements. Surgery to place microelectrodes for deep brain stimulation has been used to reduce motor symptoms in severe cases where drugs are ineffective. People with Parkinson’s who have increased the public’s awareness of the condition include the boxer Muhammad Ali, actor Michael J. Fox, Olympic cyclist Davis Phinney, and actor Alan Alda. The disease is named after the English doctor James Parkinson, who published the first detailed description in An Essay on the Shaking Palsy, in 1817. The motor symptoms of the disease result from the death of cells in the substantia nigra, a region of the midbrain, leading to a dopamine deficit. The cause of this cell death is poorly understood, but involves the build-up of proteins into Lewy bodies in the neurons.
Several neurodegenerative disorders also may present with parkinsonism. These include multiple system atrophy, progressive supranuclear palsy, corticobasal degeneration, and dementia withLewy bodies. Scientists sometimes refer to Parkinson’s disease as synucleinopathy to distinguish it from other neurodegnerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s. Considerable overlap exists between tau protein accumulates and Alzheimer’s disease. In contrast to Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s presents most commonly with memory loss, and the cardinal signs of Parkinson’s are not normal. They may represent parts of a continuum with clinical and pathological features or they may prove to be separate diseases. The relationship between PD and DLB is complex and incompletely understood, and it has close similarities with the subset of PD’s disease known as Parkinson’s Dementia with Lewy body. The symptoms in PD’s dementia are similar to those in DLB and it is close to being close to the pathological similarities with DLB, especially with the pathology of dementia known as pathological pathological dementia. The main motor symptoms are collectively called ‘parkinsonism’, or a \”parkinsonian syndrome’ While the cause of PD is unknown, it is believed to involve both inherited and environmental factors. Those with a family member affected are more likely to get the disease themselves. PD typically occurs in people over the age of 60, of whom about one percent are affected.