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Vitamin D Levels Linked to Parkinson's Symptoms

Posted 22 Jan 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 22, 2014 – Higher vitamin D levels are associated with better thinking and mood in people with Parkinson's disease, a new study suggests. The finding may lead to new ways to delay or prevent the onset of thinking problems and depression in people with the progressive neurodegenerative disease, the researchers said. Their analysis of nearly 300 Parkinson's disease patients revealed that higher blood levels of vitamin D – the "sunshine vitamin" – were associated with less severe physical symptoms, better thinking abilities and lower risk of depression. This link was especially strong in patients without dementia, according to the study in the current issue of the Journal of Parkinson's Disease. "About 30 percent of persons with [Parkinson's disease] suffer from cognitive impairment and dementia, and dementia is associated with nursing home placement and shortened life ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Vitamin D, Vitamin D3, D3, Cholecalciferol, Ergocalciferol, Drisdol, Replesta, Calciferol, Delta D3, Maximum D3, D3-5, D400, D2000, D 1000 IU, Decara, D3-50, Calcidol

Nutritional Supplement May Benefit Parkinson's Patients

Posted 23 Dec 2013 by

MONDAY, Dec. 23, 2013 – A common nutritional supplement called inosine safely boosts levels of an antioxidant thought to help people with Parkinson's disease, a small new study says. Inosine is a forerunner of the antioxidant known as urate. Inosine is naturally converted by the body into urate, but urate taken by mouth breaks down in the digestive system. "Higher urate levels are associated with a lower risk of developing Parkinson's disease, and in Parkinson's patients, may confer a slower rate of disease worsening," explained Dr. Andrew Feigin, a neurologist at the Cushing Neuroscience Institute's Movement Disorders Center in Manhasset, N.Y. He was not connected to the new study. The study included 75 people who were newly diagnosed with Parkinson's and had low levels of urate. Those who received doses of inosine meant to boost urate levels showed a rise in levels of the antioxidant ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Dietary Supplementation

Could Deep Brain Stimulation Make Parkinson's Patients Better Drivers?

Posted 18 Dec 2013 by

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 18, 2013 – Deep brain stimulation might help improve the driving ability of people with Parkinson's disease, a new German study suggests. A deep brain stimulator is an implanted device that sends electrical impulses to the brain. With patients who have epilepsy, the stimulator is believed to lower the risk of seizures, the researchers said. A driving simulator tested the abilities of 23 Parkinson's patients with a deep brain stimulator, 21 patients without the device and a control group of 21 people without Parkinson's. The patients with brain stimulators were tested three times: once with the device on, once with the device off and once with the stimulator off after they took the Parkinson's drug levodopa. The Parkinson's patients without stimulators performed worse in every driving category except one. The patients with stimulators did not perform significantly worse ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease

Exercise Seems to Ease Parkinson's-Related Depression

Posted 13 Dec 2013 by

THURSDAY, Dec. 12, 2013 – A long-term exercise program may help ease depression in people with Parkinson's disease, according to a new, small study. Researchers looked at 31 Parkinson's patients who were randomly assigned to an "early start" group that did an exercise program for 48 weeks or a "late start" group that worked out for 24 weeks. The program included three one-hour cardiovascular and resistance training workouts a week. Depression symptoms improved much more among the patients in the 48-week group than among those in the 24-week group. This is important because mood is often more debilitating than movement problems for Parkinson's patients, said study leader Dr. Ariane Park, a movement disorder neurologist at Ohio State University's Wexner Medical Center. The study was published online recently in the journal Parkinsonism & Related Disorders. More than half of Parkinson's ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Parkinson's Disease

Study Sheds Light on Link Between Pesticides, Parkinson's

Posted 27 Nov 2013 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 27, 2013 – Researchers have identified a genetic mutation that increases the risk of Parkinson's disease linked to pesticides. The gene mutation causes nerve cells that produce a substance called "dopamine" to lose their protection from pesticide damage. The body uses dopamine to send messages to the part of the brain that controls movement and coordination. Parkinson's disease – which causes movement problems such as stiffness, tremors and slurred speech – occurs when nerve cells in the brain don't produce enough dopamine. The study is the first "to show that a genetic mutation combined with exposure to pesticides creates a 'double-hit' scenario," by disabling specific pathways, which then leads to nerve-cell death, study senior author Dr. Stuart Lipton, professor and director of Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute's Center for Neuroscience, Aging, and Stem ... Read more

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New Drug Shows Early Promise in Treating Parkinson's Psychosis

Posted 1 Nov 2013 by

THURSDAY, Oct. 31 – Many people living with Parkinson's disease suffer from hallucinations and delusions, but an experimental drug might offer some relief without debilitating side effects. The drug – pimavanserin – appears to significantly relieve these troubling symptoms, according to the results of a phase 3 trial to test its effectiveness. Such symptoms affect as many as half of the estimated 7 million to 10 million Parkinson's patients around the world, according to study background information. Currently, patients are treated with antipsychotic drugs such as clozapine and quetiapine, which worsen Parkinson's motor symptoms, hasten mental decline, increase the risk of stroke and can be life-threatening, authors of the new study said. Their study was published in the Nov. 1 online issue of The Lancet and funded by Acadia Pharmaceuticals, the makers of pimavanserin. "There are no ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Drug Psychosis, Parkinsonism

Parkinson's Patients at Genetic Risk for Dementia Might Be Identified Sooner

Posted 20 Sep 2013 by

FRIDAY, Sept. 20 – Blood tests might be able to help identify Parkinson's disease patients with the greatest risk of developing dementia, a new study suggests. A genetic mutation called GBA leads to early onset of Parkinson's and severe mental decline in about 4 percent to 7 percent of Parkinson's patients. It also alters the way the body metabolizes certain kinds of fats. Mayo Clinic researchers found that Parkinson's patients who do not have this genetic mutation have higher levels of these fats in their blood. They also discovered that Parkinson's patients with high levels of these fats in their blood are more likely to have mental impairment and dementia, according to the study, which was published online Sept. 18 in the journal PLoS One. Mental impairment is a frequent symptom in Parkinson's disease and can be even more debilitating for patients and challenging for their ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Dementia

Genetic Syndrome May Have Links to Parkinson's Disease

Posted 9 Sep 2013 by

MONDAY, Sept. 9 – A genetic deletion may be linked to some cases of early onset Parkinson's disease, researchers say. The investigators found that people aged 35 to 64 who were missing DNA on a specific part of chromosome 22 were about 90 times more likely to develop Parkinson's than people from the same age group in the general population. People with this inherited genetic condition – called 22q11.2 deletion syndrome – have about 50 genes missing on chromosome 22. The condition occurs in about one in 2,000 to 4,000 people, and those with this genetic deletion may have birth defects (including heart defects), learning or speech difficulties, anxiety disorders, or schizophrenia. Previously reported cases of patients with 22q11.2 deletion syndrome and Parkinson's disease symptoms have indicated that there may be a link between the two conditions, according to the researchers from the ... Read more

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Spinal Fluid Test May Aid Early Detection of Parkinson's Disease

Posted 27 Aug 2013 by

TUESDAY, Aug. 27 – Testing for certain proteins in spinal fluid may help doctors diagnose Parkinson's disease earlier and determine how fast the movement disorder is likely to advance, according to new research. The team from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania said their discovery of these protein "biomarkers" might also aid in the development of new Parkinson's treatments. "Biomarkers for Parkinson's disease such as these could help us diagnose patients earlier," study senior author Leslie Shaw, a professor of pathology and laboratory medicine at Penn Medicine, said in a university news release. Shaw and Dr. John Trojanowski are co-leaders in the bioanalytics core for the Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI), an international study sponsored by The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's. They led a team that collected spinal fluid from ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Diagnosis and Investigation

FDA Medwatch Alert: Benztropine Mesylate Injection (Nexus Pharmaceuticals): Recall - Visible Particulate Matter

Posted 5 Aug 2013 by

ISSUE: Nexus Pharmaceuticals Inc. is recalling two lots of Benztropine Mesylate Injection, USP, 2 mg/2mL (1mg/mL) in 2 mL single dose vials due to the presence of visible particulate matter in the vials. The product is manufactured by Allergy Laboratories, Inc. and was distributed by Nexus Pharmaceuticals Inc. Affected product includes Lot Numbers 030712, 112911 The administration of particulate, if present in a parenteral drug, poses a safety risk to patients. Sequelae of thromboembolism, some life-threatening (such as pulmonary emboli), may occur. There is also risk for particulates causing phlebitis, mechanical block of the capillaries or arterioles, activation of platelets, subsequent generation of microthrombi, and emboli. Patients with preexisting condition of trauma or other medical condition that adversely affects the microvascular blood supply are at an increased risk. ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Benztropine, Cogentin, Extrapyramidal Reaction, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism

Statin Use May Reduce Parkinson's Risk, Study Says

Posted 24 Jul 2013 by

WEDNESDAY, July 24 – Millions of Americans take statins to lower their stroke and heart attack risks, but new research from Taiwan suggests the drug may offer another health benefit: cutting the odds of developing Parkinson's disease. Analyzing nearly 44,000 patients, scientists found that those who discontinued taking fat-soluble statins such as simvastatin (Zocor) or atorvastatin (Lipitor) were about 58 percent more likely to develop Parkinson's than those who kept taking the drugs. Fat-soluble statins are believed to cross the blood-brain barrier, unlike water-soluble statins such as rosuvastatin (Crestor) and pravastatin (Pravachol). The drugs may decrease inflammation and even modify dopamine pathways in the brain, which are linked to Parkinson's, the study authors suggested. "We are more glad than surprised to demonstrate the relationship," said study author Dr. Jou-Wei Lin, a ... Read more

Related support groups: Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Parkinson's Disease, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Pravachol, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Baycol, Fluvastatin, Altoprev, Pitavastatin, Altocor

FDA Medwatch Alert: Benztropine Mesylate Injection by Fresenius Kabi USA: Recall - Potential Presence Of Glass Particles

Posted 2 Jul 2013 by

ISSUE: Fresenius Kabi USA is voluntarily recalling four lots of Benztropine Mesylate Injection, USP, 2 mg/2mL (1mg/mL) in 2 mL single dose vials due to the potential presence of glass particles (glass delamination) in the vials. The defect discovered in this product was noted as visible particulate. However, the process of glass delamination may result in formation of visible and subvisible particles. No adverse events, patient reactions or customer complaints have been reported to date. BACKGROUND: Benztropine Mesylate is used as an adjunct in the therapy of all forms of Parkinsonism. It is also useful in the control of extrapyramidal disorders due to neuroleptic drugs, except tardive dyskinesia. The company has discontinued distribution of Benztropine Mesylate while it investigates the cause. The product is manufactured by Allergy Laboratories, Inc. and distributed by Fresenius Kabi ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Benztropine, Cogentin

Pesticide Exposure May Raise Parkinson's Risk, Study Suggests

Posted 28 May 2013 by

TUESDAY, May 28 – Prolonged exposure to pesticides, bug and weed killers, and solvents appears to raise the risk for developing Parkinson's disease, a new study says. Italian investigators who reviewed more than 100 prior studies found exposure to such agents boosted Parkinson's disease risk by anywhere from 33 percent to 80 percent, they reported in the May 28 issue of the journal Neurology. "Due to this association, there was also a link between farming or country living and developing Parkinson's in some of the studies," study leader Dr. Emanuele Cereda, of the IRCCS University Hospital San Matteo Foundation in Pavia, said in a journal news release. Some studies specifically explored how home or work environment affected disease risk. Where individuals got their water also was the subject of some investigations. Exposure either to the weed killer paraquat or the fungicides maneb and ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease

Eating Peppers Tied to Lower Parkinson's Risk, Study Finds

Posted 9 May 2013 by

THURSDAY, May 9 – Eating vegetables that naturally contain nicotine, such as peppers and tomatoes, may reduce your risk of developing Parkinson's disease, according to a new study. Previous research has found that smoking and other types of tobacco use are associated with a lower risk of developing Parkinson's disease, and it is believed that nicotine provides the protective effect. Tobacco belongs to a plant family called Solanaceae and some plants in this family are edible sources of nicotine. This new study included nearly 500 people who were newly diagnosed with Parkinson's and another 650 unrelated people who did not have the neurological disorder, which is typically marked by tremors and other movement problems. The study participants provided information about their tobacco use and diets. In general, vegetable consumption had no effect on Parkinson's risk. The more vegetables ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease

Muhammad Ali's Daughter Champions Fight Against Parkinson's Disease

Posted 3 May 2013 by

FRIDAY, May 3 – At 71, boxing legend Muhammad Ali – the only three-time World Heavyweight Champion – continues to fight his most challenging opponent ever: Parkinson's disease. And according to his daughter, he's still facing life straight on. "This is the man who when he was fighting would say 'I'm going to knock the other guy out in five,'" said Maryum (May May) Ali. "That personality translates to how he deals with Parkinson's. No one's really been that confident as an athlete, and that's how he is with the disease." May May is Ali's first child. Married four times, the former champion has six other daughters and two sons. Thinking back, May May believes Ali was showing signs of Parkinson's in his second-to-last fight, a few years before his 1984 diagnosis. "You lose your [sense of] smell, get constipation issues," she said. "Most people have those non-motor symptoms first. But no ... Read more

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