According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders, Parkinson’s Disease is a biochemical disorder of the brain which slows body movement and response. Parkinson’s Disease affects more than 1.5 million people in the United States. The disease affects people of all ages, but primarily those over
the age of 50. Research shows that if there is a family history of the disease, the chances of developing Parkinson’s Disease is greater; however, the cause of the disease is still unknown.
Since Parkinson’s Disease affects the brain and the brain controls the body, multiple symptoms of this disease are common and may include shaking (tremor) of various parts of the body, rigidity or stiffness of the limbs, slowness of movement, shuffling gait, stooped posture, loss of facial expression and
slowing of thought processes.
Treatment for Parkinson’s Disease is needed to correct the chemical imbalance that causes these debilitating symptoms. Medication may treat the “symptoms,” but since there is no known cure for Parkinson’s Disease, progression of the disease is certain. Ongoing research is focused on finding more effective treatments.
As this disease progresses, hospice exists as an alternative service providing a network of social, medical and continuing care to help patients and their caregivers receive the help they need at each step along this difficult journey.