PARKINSON’s DISEASE – HOW TO PREVENT, DIAGNOSE AND TREAT? COMPLETE GUIDE!
Actual Qn from a follower:
“I wish to know that are there better solution for Parkinson’s disease. My dad have this. Thanks”
Parkinson’s disease – a neurodegenerative brain disorder that takes usually many years to develop.
Unfortunately, no cure has been found for Parkinson’s disease IN ITS ADVANCED STAGE. HOWEVER, IT CAN BE PREVENTED IF FOUND EARLIER.
However, we can treat the symptoms of this disease and keep the affected person alive for many years with less discomforts.
CAUSES FOR PARKINSON’s DISEASE
(1) The cause for the Parkinson’s disease is still not found clearly.
(2) However, it is believed that both genetic and environmental things may play a role in causing this disease.
(3) In the case of one out of seven cases, genetic reasons have been found using the family history.
(4) Some Genetic mutations (sudden changes in the structure of genes) in the LRRK2, PARK7, PINK1, PRKN, or SNCA gene are believed to cause this disease.
(5) Though it affects mostly the people above 60, there are some cases in early ages too.
HOW DOES PARKINSON’S DISEASE STARTS IN A PERSON?
Our brain has NEURON Cells in its portion called substantia nigra. These neurons produce a neurotransmitter called DOPAMINE. This Dopamine has a very important function of communication commands from ‘substantia nigra’ to various organs of the body. The body organs make movements according to the commands received from ‘substantia nigra’ portion of brain, through Dopamine.
In the case of Parkinson’s affected persons, the neurons gradually stops producing this neurotransmitter Dopamine.
Only when the brain communicates the organs properly, a person can move his organs and show his emotions. Because of the deficiency of neurotransmitter Dopamine, when a level of about 3/4th of neuro-degeneration (impairment of nerves) happens, the communication between the brain and the body parts come down remarkably and the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease intensifies. Therefore, the person loses his ability to adjust his body movements and feelings. In fact, he does not know that he has to make movements because of lack of command from brain.
CAN WE PREVENT PARKINSON’s DISEASE?
If we go to the neurologist even when we have two or more of the following preliminary symptoms, we can prevent the advancement of the disease.
The stoppage of movements (motor symptoms) is the advanced stage only. When a person starts to develop Parkinson’s disease, he may show some preliminary symptoms such as
(i) difficulty in sleeping;
(ii) lack of smelling (hyposmia);
(iv) Occassional and automatic shaking of fingers, hands, lips, etc;
(v) Stiffness in body, hands, legs, etc that does not go after you start to move;
(vi) Voice becoming low;
(vii) Stooping or leaning beyond your control while standing.
(viii) Frequent dizziness.If these symptoms exist for a prolonged period, one should go for test for the possibility of the development of Parkinson’s disease.
(ix) Difficulty in getting up, start moving, taking a glass by folding the fingers, etc.
(x) Difficulty in the movement of lips, eyes, swallowing, etc.
It is always better to consult a neurologist earlier at this stage itself to prevent the start of the MOTOR symptoms (movement difficulty or inability). By taking sufficient medications, the advancement of this disease can be prevented.
WHAT TO DO IF PARKINSON’s DISEASE HAS ADVANCED?
If we miss the earlier symptoms and do not consult a neurologist with specialization in brain, the motor symptoms appear as the final attack. The person finds it unable to move and becomes bedridden.
In this stage,
(i) If you meet the neurologist within 4 hours of the stoppage of movements, he may try for the recovery of movements to some extent that depends on luck. Otherwise, the Parkinson’s disease becomes permanent.
(ii) In such cases, our aim should be to improve the quality of life of the affected patient.
(iii) The maintenance of Parkinson affected person involves the coordinated treatment by (a) speech therapy, (b) physio therapy (exercises) and (c) occupational therapy along with regular medications.
(iv) In some cases, even surgical treatment is considered.
These compounded regular maintenance of the affected person can help him to lead a less complicated life even with the difficulty.
HOW PARKINSON’s DISEASE IS DIAGNOSED BY THE NEUROLOGISTS?
First, the neurologist analyses your feedback about symptoms and he personally verifies those symptoms. Then, he analyses the previous medical history of the patient. Now a days, there are advance scanning systems to disgnose Parkinson’s disease. Examples are: DAT scans and PET SCANS.
HOW TO MAINTAIN THE QUALITY OF LIFE OF PATIENTS WITH PARKINSON’s DISEASE?
(i) Nutrient and balanced foods containing more vitamin content including Vitamin B-Complex and C.
(ii) Properly designed bathroom and toilet close to the place where the patient rests.
(iii) Since there are always chance for fall downs, presence of an assistant all the time and advising the patient not to try to get up when no one is near him.
(iv) Proper cleanliness of the body can boost his morale.
(v) Regular exercise with the help of an assistant or physiotherapist.
(vi) Patience is required for the caretaker. He should encourage the patient to manage himself independently in his presence, not all the times. Some activities can be encouraged such as eating, reading, etc.
(vii) The caretaker should handle the patient with much care and he should frequently remind the patient about his difficulties and hence avoid moving in the absence of a caretaker.
(viii) The caretaker should give a feel of safety in the mind of the patient that will boost the quality of the life of the patient.
(ix) Regular consultation of the neurologist as per his advice is necessary.
AN ADVICE FOR THE READERS:
If you find atleast 2 or three above preliminary and earlier symptoms in you, do not delay even a single day to meet a neurologist specialized in brain. This is very important.
Hope this helps.