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Parkinsons

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Parkinson's Disease
Erick Magana
PSY/340
January 21 2014
Melvin Council

Parkinson's Disease
As people start to become more health conscious there are some illnesses that cannot be prevented or cured. As to say it was destined from some kind of deity. To be given a disease or a disability that one cannot recover from must be a horrible feeling, the thought of death around the corner or not being able to do the things that one could do with ease at one point in their life. Not like the thought of death of one day everyone will all die by an unsuspecting death. But to know that having three months, a year or two year two live. How can one not crumble and fall under depression as to quit on one’s life. The human race is extremely resilient. Knowing that a person has a disease does not mean that it is the end of the world. There is treatment and therapies that help with the disease or disability to make life easy to deal with. One of the diseases is that has no cure is but treatment is available is Parkinson’s disease (PD).
Parkinson’s is a disease that is hereditary, at least that is what some doctors believe even though no one really knows how Parkinson’s is developed. Parkinson's disease may be caused by a viral infection or by exposure to environmental toxins such as pesticides or carbon monoxide. Parkinson’s is usually found in older people from the ages of 50-65 but can occur at any age. It is slightly more common in men than in women. Parkinson’s is the gradual degeneration of nerve cells in the brain that controls body movement. The death of these brain cells, called neurons, are responsible for releasing dopamine. Dopamine is a chemical that sends messages to the brain that controls movement and coordination. As Parkinson’s progress less of dopamine is produced in the brain leaving a person unable to control movement normally. The movements of the body is regulated by a portion of the brain, the basal ganglia. The basal ganglia requires a proper balance of dopamine and acetylcholine and both are involved in the transmission of nerve impulses. Having Parkinson’s throws off the balance of the neurotransmitters. Therefore leaving a person unable to control movement normally. ("Understanding Parkinson’s Disease-The Basics", 2014)
The behavioral changes in one’s life with Parkinson’s disease is immense. One of the most obvious changes is how one would control there movements. So it would be difficult just to hold a glass of water. Another change would be their mood and would develop anxiety disorder. Mood disorders are common. Most common mood disorder is depression. “Anxiety disorders including generalized anxiety, social phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and panic disorder are probably increased in PD, although there has been little research in this area. Many PD patients have anxiety symptoms due to legitimate concern about their chronic, progressive illness” (Behavioral Disturbances, 2004). Because of the disease people would generally stress about their condition constantly and therefore develop their own behavioral changes. ("Behavioral Disturbances In Parkinson’s Disease", 2004)
The cause of Parkinson’s could be environmental or genetic. Researchers do not have an exact answer to how people develop Parkinson’s disease. Many experts think that the disease is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors, which may vary from person to person. Scientists have identified aging as an important risk factor; there is a two to four percent risk for Parkinson’s among people over age 60. Environmental risk contributing to Parkinson’s disease can be linked to rural living, well water, manganese and pesticides. There are people who are exposed to toxins and never develop a disease at all. With genetics it is stated that there is a about 15 to 25 percent of people with Parkinson’s report having a relative with the disease. Researchers have found that if a person has an affected relative, a first degree relative like a sister, brother or parent, that person has a nine percent chance of also inheriting the disease. ("Parkinson'S Disease Foundation", 2014).
Treatments and therapies are not cures for this disease, they are only to help manage the symptoms. There are medications, weight training, and proper dieting are all part of treatments that help with the Parkinson’s disease. There are many medications available to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s, although none yet that actually reverse the effects of the disease. These medications are Carbidopa/Levodopa therapy, Dopamine Agonists, Anticholinergics, MAO-B Inhibitors, and COMT Inhibitors. There are also some over the counter medications that can be used also. Surgical treatments such as deep brain stimulation. Surgical treatments have come a long way since it was first developed more than 50 years ago. Deep brain stimulation (DBS), was developed in the 1990s and is now a standard treatment for Parkinson’s. ("Parkinson’s Disease Foundation", 2014).
Team B was the team that presented Parkinson’s disease. The team showed a power point presentation with eleven slides. Within those slides was a video about Michael J. Fox and his perseverance with Parkinson’s disease. What a resilient person. I thought that was a great approach to introducing their presentation to the class. The team also spoke about what Parkinson’s really is. The team also put a poster on their slides to show some statistics about the disease. The team spoke about symptoms of the disease, motor symptoms non motor symptoms and others symptoms. They brought up treatments in how to deal with the disease. They explained the role of genetics and how it effects the population. They also spoke about functional and behavioral changes. The overall presentation was very informative. Team B did a great job on the organization and the information on the disease Parkinson’s.

References:

Behavioral disturbances in Parkinson's disease. (2004). Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3181807/
Parkinson's Disease Foundation. (2014). Retrieved from http://www.pdf.org/en/causes#genetic
Understanding Parkinson's Disease -- the Basics. (2014). Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/parkinsons-disease/guide/understanding-parkinsons-disease-basics

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