Raleigh, NC (PRWEB) April 25, 2006
Nationwide, as many as 1.5 million people suffer from Parkinson's, according to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation. A chronic and progressive disorder, Parkinson's strikes slightly more men than women and more whites than blacks in the United States. People with Parkinson's disease have plenty of company.
Each year about 50,000 patients join the ranks of the estimated one million Americans who share this condition, which affects roughly one of every 100 Americans over age 65.
But numbers alone can't begin to capture the human impact of Parkinson's disease. The disease is not only frightening for the people who have it but also for those who love them as Parkinson's symptoms begin to interfere with everyday life.
The cause of Parkinson's disease is currently unknown. Researchers are trying to discover why the brain of the affected person loses its dopamine, with studies showing that the underlying causes are probably both genetic and environmental. It may be as long as five years after the loss of dopamine that the first noticeable symptoms appear.
Common Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease:
Symptoms may be present on one or both sides of the body. The person's intellectual ability is unchanged until the advanced stages of the illness, when it deteriorates slowly. The following are a list of symptoms to be aware of:
· Facial Expressions
· Voice Pitch
A common early symptom is a tremor in one finger that eventually spreads to involve the whole arm. Tremors are most noticeable when the person is at rest, and may involve a distinctive movement in which the thumb and the index finger rub together rhythmically (four or five times a second) in what is described as the 'pill-rolling' tremor. Tremors can also occur in the head, lips, tongue, and feet. Some patients report experiencing internal tremors, which may occur several times a week, but are of short duration (under half an hour). Tremors do not occur during sleep.
Several other ailments mimic the symptoms of Parkinson's, and your health professional will be the best resource for information on this aspect.
In support of Parkinson’s Awareness Month, the NextStep® walking device will be available for order via the Internet for only $197, a savings of $150.
The NextStep® was developed by Parkinson’s NextStep, LLC, a company whose mission it is to create and develop products that serve, enrich, and foster independence for Parkinson’s sufferers. The NextStep® can be purchased on the company’s Web site, http://www.icanstep.com or by calling toll-free 1.888.344.7837. The cane and NextStep® device retails for $349, is self-contained and ready to use.