Parkinson's Today Blog

How Common is Cognitive Decline in Parkinson’s?

Date
Author
Parkinson's Foundation

A new study finds that cognitive impairment is a frequent and rapidly progressing symptom of Parkinson’s disease (PD). About half of the participants who had PD for an average of five years and had normal cognition at the beginning of the study developed mild cognitive impairment (MCI) within six years – about 11 years after PD diagnosis. Those few who developed MCI progressed to dementia within five more years. The results appear in the September 11 online edition of Neurology.

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Science News

What's Hot in PD? Short and Long-Term Problems with Anticholinergic Drugs used for Sleep, Bladder, and Tremor Symptoms in Parkinson’s Disease Patients

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Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

People with Parkinson's disease (PD) frequently struggle to identify drug therapies that can address bothersome symptoms such as sleep dysfunction, bladder urgency, drooling and tremor. Many of the drug therapies such as Benadryl (diphenhydramine), Advil PM, Alleve PM, common antihistamines, and others pills are readily available over the counter and do not require a prescription. These medications block a cholinergic receptor in the brain, and can improve many Parkinson’s disease symptoms.

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What's Hot in PD?

What's Hot in PD? Tips for Parkinson’s Disease Patients Switching from Sinemet or Madopar to Rytary (IPX066)

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Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

The What’s Hot in Parkinson’s disease blog written in April 2013 featured a new extended release dopamine drug called IPX066. This new dopamine formulation achieved full FDA approval in January 2015. The drug is now sold under the name Rytary. At the Parkinson's Foundation we frequently hear from people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) that current carbidopa/levodopa medication preparations fail to adequately address disease-related symptoms. In this month’s What’s Hot column we will update you on important information on Rytary, and also offer a few tips for switching.

Category
What's Hot in PD?

Caregiver Corner: Lewy What? Explaining Lewy Body Dementia

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Author
Elizabeth Patrick

Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is a common progressive brain disease that affects thinking, movement, behavior and sleep. Approximately 1.3 million Americans have Lewy body dementia, but may not be correctly diagnosed because many doctors are unfamiliar with it. Most people see multiple doctors before receiving the final diagnosis of Lewy body dementia. Their first response is often, “Lewy what?”

 

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Caregiver Corner

What's Hot in PD? An Update on DAT Scanning for Parkinson’s Disease Diagnosis

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Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

In 2011, the FDA approved a diagnostic test for Parkinson’s disease. The DaTscan (Ioflupane I 123 injection, also known as phenyltropane) is a radiopharmaceutical agent which is injected into a patient’s veins in a procedure referred to as SPECT imaging. DaTscan, when it was approved, was considered an important addition to the armamentarium of the bedside clinician. In 2011 I wrote a What’s Hot column on DAT scanning, and this month I will update that posting and bring everyone up to date on the impact of this test.

Category
What's Hot in PD?

What's Hot in PD? When should you start medication therapy for Parkinson’s disease?

Date
Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

One of the most common questions that we receive on both on the Parkinson's Foundation Ask the Doctor forum, and on the1-800-4PD-INFO Helpline is “when should I start medications for my Parkinson’s disease.” This months What’s Hot in PD column will focus on this simple, but critically important question.

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What's Hot in PD?

What's Hot in PD? Measuring Quality and Assessing Depression in Parkinson’s Disease

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Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

April is Parkinson’s disease awareness month and we thought it would be fitting to discuss how we are approaching the measurement of quality, and how best to measure depression at the bedside in Parkinson’s disease. The Parkinson's Foundation has been committed to improving the quality of care throughout its Centers of Excellence network and throughout the world by funding and promoting the Quality Improvement Initiative Study.

Category
What's Hot in PD?

What's Hot in PD? If you are Dizzy or Passing Out, it could be Your Parkinson’s Disease or Parkinson’s Disease Medications

Date
Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

Over many years of clinical practice, I have seen many Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients visit the emergency room or clinic because of dizziness and/or syncope (passing out).  In most cases, the obligatory cardiac evaluation finds no underlying factor. Many patients are referred to a vestibular physical therapist, someone who specializes in gaze and gait stabilization, to fix vertigo; however, this approach is useful for few patients. Most patients actually have orthostatic hypotension, which can be a manifestation of Parkinson’s and made worse by Parkinson’s medications.

Category
What's Hot in PD?

What's Hot in PD? Should I get a DaTscan or PET scan to confirm my diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease?

Date
Author
Dr. Michael S. Okun

This past month, the FDA approved DaTscan (Ioflupane I 123 injection, also known as phenyltropane), a radiopharmaceutical agent which is injected into a patient’s veins in a procedure referred to as SPECT imaging. DaTscan is an important addition because it is anticipated to be more widely available than other techniques and it has received several major endorsements from leading scientists.

Category
What's Hot in PD?
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