Parkinson's Disease (Pd)

Parkinson’s disease, also called paralysis agitans or shaking palsy is a movement disorder. Cases of PD are reported at all ages, though it is uncommon in people younger than 40.

This disease is more common among men and usually occurs after 60 years.

The average age at which symptoms begin in the USA. is 58-60.

The nerve cells in the part of the brain which control movements are mainly affected. The nerve cells (neurons) which make the chemical called dopamine either don’t work sufficiently or are completely destroyed. The real cause behind this had never been identified. Though, many risk factors have been enumerated in literature.

Causes of Parkinson's disease:

Why Parkinson's Disease occurs, no one knows. These are some factors that scientists believe predisposes individuals to PD.

  • Genetic factors: About 15 to 25 percent of people with Parkinson's report having a relative with the disease. This means that if your parent has Parkinson's, your chances of developing the disease are slightly higher than the risk in the general population.
  • Studies have revealed that there may be more of a genetic basis to young-onset PD (that is, the 10 percent or so of people with Parkinson's for whom onset occurs at or before age 50) than to later-onset PD.
  • The vast majority of Parkinson's cases are not directly inherited, but researchers have discovered several genes that can cause the disease in a small number of families. Genetic diseases occur when important genes contain mutations, which result in abnormal proteins that in turn cause disease.

Diagnosis

Currently no blood or laboratory tests that have been proven to help in diagnosing PD. It is difficult to diagnose PD accurately. Thus, medical history and a neurological examination alone guide the physician in diagnosing.

The Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) is a rating scale used to follow the longitudinal course of Parkinson's disease.

Related conditions: There are a number of disorders that mimic Parkinson’s disease in some of their symptoms. On close examination though, they are distinguisale from the idiopathic PD. These conditions fortunately have additional symptoms which do not occur in PD.Such disorders need to be ruled out before establishing a diagnosis of PD.

The nerve cells in the part of the brain which control movements are mainly affected. The nerve cells (neurons) which make the chemical called dopamine either don’t work sufficiently or are completely destroyed. The real cause behind this had never been identified. Though, many risk factors have been enumerated in literature.