Parkinson’s disease (PD) transforms lives, requiring resilience, courage, and determination to adapt to a new way of living. This World Parkinson’s Day, on 11 April, 2023 join Physiopedia to spread the word, let us unite and spark a global movement to empower those living with PD and inspire worldwide action towards a brighter future.
Understanding Parkinson’s Disease
Globally, over 10 million people are living with Parkinson’s (PD). In the United States alone, it is estimated that over 90,000 people are diagnosed with PD each year. While there are no definitive recorded figures for PD diagnosis in Europe, it is estimated that there are currently around 1.2 million people in Europe living with PD. As the world’s population continues to age, these numbers are expected to rise, making it even more crucial to raise awareness and improve our understanding of PD.
The first symptoms of PD were reported in 1817 by James Parkinson. PD is a progressive neurological disorder that affects the nerve cells responsible for producing dopamine, a vital neurotransmitter responsible for controlling movement and coordination. Dopamine is the spark responsible for motor function, mood and decision-making. The loss of dopamine-producing cells leads to a range of symptoms that can affect movement and cognition.
Primary motor symptoms of PD vary among individuals but may include tremors, muscle stiffness, bradykinesia (slow movement), difficultly with walking, and postural instability. Parkinson’s disease can also manifest non-motor symptoms such as sleep disturbances, mood changes, and cognitive impairment. These diverse symptoms significantly impact daily life, and each person’s journey with PD is unique.
A person is diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease every 6 minutes
Although PD has no cure, various treatments help manage its symptoms, including medications, lifestyle changes, and surgical interventions like deep brain stimulation (DBS). Exercise is a crucial strategy for managing PD. A multidisciplinary approach involving healthcare professionals such as neurologists, physiotherapists, and occupational therapists is often necessary to address the wide-ranging needs of people with PD.
With the theme #Take6forPD in America and the Spark initiative in Europe, the global Parkinson’s community is poised to raise awareness, generate support, and advance research. Together we can make an impact!
worldparkinsonsday #thespark #Take6forPD #StandUp2PD #Sit2Stand #LetsTalkAboutParkinsons