Parkinson's disease

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Parkinson's disease

or

Parkinsonism,

degenerative brain disorder first described by the English surgeon James Parkinson in 1817. When there is no known cause, the disease usually appears after age 40 and is referred to as Parkinson's disease; a number of genes have been found to be associated with the disease. Parkinsonism usually refers to similar symptoms resulting from head injury, encephalitis, syphilis, carbon monoxide poisoning, cerebral arteriosclerosis, or use of MPTP (a synthetic narcotic). The disorder is also termed paralysis agitans, or shaking palsy.

Parkinson's disease is a debilitating and progressive disorder in which the chemicals that facilitate electrical transmission between nerve cells are depleted. It was the first disease to be treated by drugs that replace deficient neurotransmittersneurotransmitter,
chemical that transmits information across the junction (synapse) that separates one nerve cell (neuron) from another nerve cell or a muscle. Neurotransmitters are stored in the nerve cell's bulbous end (axon).
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. Symptoms usually begin in middle to later life with trembling of the lips and hands, loss of facial expression, and muscular rigidity. As it progresses it may bring on body tremors, particularly in muscles at rest. Movements become slow and difficult; walking degrades to a shuffle. After many years physical incapacity may occur. Dementia occurs in at least 50% of the patients; depression is also common.

When drugs such as levodopa (L-Dopa) are taken orally, many of the worst symptoms are lessened. New drugs such as pramipexole (Mirapex) and ropinirole (Requip) can delay the need for levodopa. Apomorphine (Apokyn) is used treat episodes of reduced mobility in patients with advanced Parkinson's that responds less effectively to levodopa. Future approaches to treatment include a focus on early detection and slowing progression of the disease. Encouraging results have been reported from surgical insertion of a pacemakerlike device deep in the brain to suppress uncontrolled movements, but surgical transplantation of fetal dopamine-producing cells failed to show significant benefits in a controlled study. Traditional surgery can alleviate some tremors, and physical therapy may help mobility.

Parkinson's disease

[′pär·kən·sənz di‚zēz]
(medicine)
References in periodicals archive ?
The aim of this study is to describe the severe morbidity and mortality of Parkinson disease by age, gender, race, and parish-level in the Louisiana population.
Patient records were selected if any of the ten diagnoses had an International Classification of Disease (ICD) 9 code for Parkinson Disease (PD) ICD 9 = 332 (PD) or ICD 9 = 332.
I was very much isolated as far as knowing anybody else with Parkinson disease.
The goal was to raise about $150,000 for Parkinson disease research.
The participants ranged in age from 45 to 83 years (mean - 68 years) and the mean length of time they had had Parkinson disease was eight years (range 2 to 25 years).
Evidence for the Environmental Origins of Parkinson Disease
Remarkably, in experiments using rat embryonic nerve cells transfected with alpha-synuclein, Rab1a selectively rescued dopamine-producing neurons, the cells most at risk in Parkinson disease.
Parkinson disease is unique from AD in that it is characterized by abnormalities of motor control, as opposed to intellectual and personality changes.
Parkinson disease (PD) is a chronic neurodegenerative condition afflicting nearly one million people in the United States alone (McDonald et al.
Worley Brown Endowed Chair in Neurology at Emory University, where he also serves as Director, Movement Disorders Program; Professor, Department of Neurology; Vice-Chairman for Clinical Affairs, Department of Neurology; Medical Director, American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) Information and Referral Center; Co-Director, APDA Advanced Center for Parkinson Research; and Affiliate Scientist, Division of Neurobiology, Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center.
Parkinson disease is a progressive disease of the nervous system that can cause trembling or shakiness, rigid muscles, slowed movement, and impaired balance.
An earlier NIEHS-led neurodegenerative disease program announcement issued in partnership with the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), the National Institute on Aging (NIA), and the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) titled Xenobiotics and Cell Death/Injury in Neurodegenerative Disease (PAS-99-054) continues to solicit new research projects, primarily in the area of Parkinson disease.