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Study Questions Use of Physical Therapy for Early Parkinson's

Posted 19 days ago by

TUESDAY, Jan. 19, 2016 – Physical therapy might not benefit people with mild-to-moderate Parkinson's disease, a new study suggests. Parkinson's disease is a movement disorder that interferes with the ability to do daily tasks. Typically, physical therapy is used in the later stages of the disease, but this study assessed its effectiveness in earlier stages. Researchers randomly assigned 762 patients with mild-to-moderate Parkinson's to either physical therapy and occupational therapy, or a "control" group with no therapy. Over eight weeks, the patients in the therapy group did about four 58-minute sessions. After three months, there was no difference between the therapy group and the control group in the ability to do daily tasks, the study found. The results were published online Jan. 19 in the journal JAMA Neurology. It's possible that mild-to-moderate Parkinson's disease may not ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Sinemet, Levodopa, Carbidopa/Levodopa, Stalevo, Sinemet CR, Stalevo 100, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Rytary, Parcopa, Carbidopa/Entacapone/Levodopa, Stalevo 200, Stalevo 150, Dopar, Stalevo 50, Stalevo 125, Atamet, Duopa, Larodopa

High Uric-Acid Levels, Lower Risk of Parkinson's?

Posted 13 Jan 2016 by

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 13, 2016 – Men with high levels of uric acid in their blood may be less likely to develop Parkinson's disease, a new study suggests. Researchers compared about 400 people in ongoing studies who developed Parkinson's disease and more than 1,200 people in the same studies who did not develop the movement disorder. Men with the highest levels of uric acid (also called urate) were nearly 40 percent less likely to develop Parkinson's disease than those with the lowest levels, according to the study published online Jan. 13 in the journal Neurology. "These results suggest that urate could protect against Parkinson's or slow the progression of the disease in its very early stages before symptoms are seen," study author Dr. Xiang Gao, of Pennsylvania State University, said in a news release from the American Academy of Neurology. "The findings support more research on whether ... Read more

Related support groups: Gout, Parkinson's Disease, Gout - Acute, Gouty Arthritis, Diagnosis and Investigation, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Gout - Prophylaxis

Dementia Drug May Lower Risk of Falls Among Parkinson's Patients

Posted 13 Jan 2016 by

TUESDAY, Jan. 12, 2016 – A widely used dementia drug shows potential in reducing the risk of falls among Parkinson's patients, new research suggests. "With the degeneration of dopamine-producing nerve cells, people with Parkinson's often have issues with unsteadiness when walking. As part of the condition, they also have lower levels of acetylcholine, a chemical which helps us to concentrate – making it extremely difficult to pay attention to walking," said study lead author Emily Henderson, from the University of Bristol in England. The study included 130 people with Parkinson's disease who had fallen in the past year. Half took the drug rivastigmine (Exelon), while the other half took a placebo. After eight months, those who took the rivastigmine capsules were much steadier when walking and 45 percent less likely to fall than those who took the placebo, according to the researchers. ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Exelon, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Rivastigmine, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Prevention of Falls, Lewy Body Dementia, Arteriosclerotic Dementia w/ Depressive Features

Early Weight Loss With Parkinson's May Be a Red Flag

Posted 11 Jan 2016 by

MONDAY, Jan. 11, 2016 – People who lose weight in the early stages of Parkinson's disease may have a more serious form of the movement disorder, according to a new study. Parkinson's is a chronic and progressive disease marked by tremors, impaired coordination, and slowness and/or stiffness. The cause and cure are unknown. Weight loss is common in Parkinson's patients, according to background information from the study. But the study findings, published online Jan. 11 in the journal JAMA Neurology, suggest that weight loss in the early stages of the disease could be a red flag for doctors. "I suspect we may be looking at several subtypes of this disease," study lead author Dr. Anne-Marie Wills, of Massachusetts General Hospital's neurological clinical research institute, said in a hospital news release. "The patients who experience early weight loss appear to have a more severe, ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism

Hepatitis C May Be Tied to Greater Risk for Parkinson's Disease

Posted 24 Dec 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 23, 2015 – Hepatitis C is an infection that affects the liver, but people with the virus may also be at greater risk for Parkinson's disease, a new report shows. "Many factors clearly play a role in the development of Parkinson's disease, including environmental factors," study author Dr. Chia-Hung Kao, of China Medical University in Taichung, Taiwan, said in a news release from the American Academy of Neurology. "This nationwide study, using the National Health Insurance Research Database of Taiwan, suggests that hepatitis caused specifically by the hepatitis C virus may increase the risk of developing [Parkinson's] disease," Kao said. However, the association seen in the study does not prove a cause-and-effect relationship. And "more research is needed to investigate this link," Kao added. One expert in Parkinson's disease agreed that it's too soon to draw firm ... Read more

Related support groups: Hepatitis C, Parkinson's Disease, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism

Pesticide in Milk Years Ago May Be Linked to Signs of Parkinson's: Study

Posted 9 Dec 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 9, 2015 – Men who drank milk that may have been tainted with a pesticide when they were young might be more likely to develop signs of Parkinson's disease, a new study out of Hawaii suggests. A pesticide called heptachlor epoxide was found at high levels in milk in the early 1980s in Hawaii, according to the study authors. The pesticide was used in the pineapple industry, and can also be found in well water. Use of the pesticide was banned in the United States around the same time, the researchers noted. The current study can't prove that the pesticide or milk consumption directly causes Parkinson's disease; it can only show an association, according to study author R. D. Abbott, of Shiga University of Medical Science in Otsu, Japan. The study authors also pointed out that they don't know for sure if the milk consumed by these men had heptachlor epoxide in it or not. ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Diagnosis and Investigation, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism

New Clues to Easing Side Effects From Parkinson's Drug

Posted 18 Nov 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 18, 2015 – The drug levodopa is a leading treatment for Parkinson's disease, but for most patients the medication also brings debilitating side effects. Now, scientists say animal studies are pointing to a compound that might reduce those unwanted effects. "If clinical trials confirm our preliminary findings, the eventual drug developed could make a significant improvement in the quality of life for people with Parkinson's disease," lead researcher D. James Surmeier, chair of physiology at Northwestern University School of Medicine in Chicago, said in a university news release. According to the researchers, Parkinson's disease affects more than one million Americans, and that number is expected to double by 2030. Levodopa is widely used to treat the stiffness, tremors and poor muscle control caused by the illness. But the drug can also trigger uncontrolled movement – ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Sinemet, Levodopa, Carbidopa/Levodopa, Stalevo, Sinemet CR, Stalevo 100, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Rytary, Parcopa, Carbidopa/Entacapone/Levodopa, Stalevo 200, Stalevo 150, Dopar, Stalevo 50, Stalevo 125, Atamet, Duopa, Larodopa

Coffee Drinkers May Live Longer

Posted 16 Nov 2015 by

MONDAY, Nov. 16, 2015 – Coffee lovers may live longer than those who don't imbibe – with lower risks of early death from heart disease and neurological conditions such as Parkinson's disease, a large U.S. study finds. Researchers said the study, published online Nov. 16 in Circulation, adds to a large body of evidence on the good side of coffee. People often think of coffee-drinking as a bad habit that they need to break, said study leader Dr. Frank Hu, a professor of nutrition and epidemiology at Harvard School of Public Health in Boston. But, Hu said, many studies have linked moderate coffee intake to lower risks of developing various diseases – from heart disease and diabetes, to liver cancer, to neurological diseases such as Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's. His team's study, funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, adds another layer of evidence. It found ... Read more

Related support groups: Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson's Disease, Caffeine, Alzheimer's Disease, Fioricet, Excedrin, Alert, Fiorinal, Excedrin Migraine, Cafergot, Esgic, Fiorinal with Codeine, Fioricet with Codeine, Norgesic, Esgic-Plus, Headache Relief, Keep Going, Excedrin Extra Strength, Dolgic Plus, Norgesic Forte

Parkinson's Drug Shows Promise Against Macular Degeneration

Posted 12 Nov 2015 by

THURSDAY, Nov. 12, 2015 – A common Parkinson's disease medication might hold potential for preventing or treating macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss in the elderly, new research suggests. At this stage, no one is recommending that patients take the drug, levodopa (L-dopa), to thwart eye disease. But the findings are intriguing, researchers said. "Patients taking L-dopa for any reason are much less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration. If they do, they develop the disease much later in life than those not taking L-dopa," said study lead author Brian McKay, an associate professor of ophthalmology and vision science at the University of Arizona. However, the study doesn't actually prove that levodopa causes a lower incidence of age-related macular degeneration. It only uncovered an association between the two. Age-related macular degeneration affects ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Sinemet, Macular Degeneration, Levodopa, Carbidopa/Levodopa, Stalevo, Sinemet CR, Diagnosis and Investigation, Stalevo 100, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Rytary, Parcopa, Carbidopa/Entacapone/Levodopa, Stalevo 200, Stalevo 75, Stalevo 150, Dopar, Stalevo 50, Stalevo 125

FDA Medwatch Alert: Entacapone: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Review Found No Increased Cardiovascular Risks

Posted 28 Oct 2015 by

Including Comtan (entacapone) and Stalevo (entacapone, carbidopa, and levodopa) ISSUE: An FDA safety review has found no clear evidence of an increased risk of heart attacks, stroke, or other cardiovascular events associated with the use of entacapone for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. As a result, recommendations for using Comtan (entacapone) and Stalevo (a combination of entacapone, carbidopa, and levodopa) will remain the same in the drug labels. FDA alerted patients and health care professionals about a possible increased risk for cardiovascular events and death with Stalevo in August 2010. This possible safety issue was observed in a clinical trial called the Stalevo Reduction in Dyskinesia Evaluation in Parkinson’s Disease (STRIDE-PD) and in a meta-analysis that combined the cardiovascular-related findings from 15 clinical trials comparing Stalevo to carbidopa/levodopa. Car ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Stalevo, Entacapone, Comtan, Stalevo 100, Carbidopa/Entacapone/Levodopa, Stalevo 200, Stalevo 75, Stalevo 150, Stalevo 50, Stalevo 125

Finding Disease Cures Can Take Up to a Century: Analysis

Posted 24 Sep 2015 by

THURSDAY, Sept. 24, 2015 – A team of scientists has looked back over decades of discovery to conclude that it can take dozens of years, even a century, for cumulative research to lead to a cure for a single disease. The finding is disheartening given the current U.S. government underfunding of the basic science needed to investigate diseases, said a team led by Dr. R. Sanders Williams, president of the San Francisco-based Gladstone Institutes, a biomedical research organization. "As shown by our analysis, new treatments depend upon a broad base of scientific knowledge plus special contributions from a few exceptional scientists," Williams said in an institute news release. For anyone suffering from an illness, the dream word is "cure." True cures for disease remain rare, though. But, in the new study the Gladstone team traced the long investigative paths linking generations of ... Read more

Related support groups: Diabetes, Type 2, Cancer, Heart Failure, Parkinson's Disease, Congestive Heart Failure, Diabetes, Type 1, Alzheimer's Disease, Diabetes Mellitus, Diagnosis and Investigation, Parkinsonism, Yervoy, Ipilimumab, Orkambi, Ivacaftor/lumacaftor, Ivacaftor, Kalydeco

Researchers Explore Memory Problems Related to Parkinson's

Posted 4 Sep 2015 by

FRIDAY, Sept. 4, 2015 – Many people with Parkinson's disease have memory problems, researchers report. The study included 40 people with early stage Parkinson's disease and 40 healthy older adults. While the disease is generally viewed as a movement disorder, about half of the Parkinson's patients had difficulty with some aspect of memory, such as learning and retaining information, or recalling spoken information, the investigators found. "And then half of those participants, or nearly one-quarter of all participants with Parkinson's, were really having a difficult time consistently with their memory, enough that it would be noticeable to other people," said study author Jared Tanner. Tanner is an assistant research professor in the department of clinical and health psychology at the University of Florida at Gainesville. Still, there was good news: Most of the Parkinson's patients did ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease

Common Diabetes Meds Tied to Lower Risk for Parkinson's

Posted 21 Jul 2015 by

TUESDAY, July 21, 2015 – A class of diabetes meds that include widely used drugs such as Actos and Avandia may help protect users against Parkinson's disease, a new study suggests. The study included nearly 44,600 British diabetes patients who took what are known as glitazone drugs – Avandia's generic name is rosiglitazone, while pioglitazone is the generic name for Actos. Researchers compared the medical records of those diabetes patients against the records of more than 120,000 diabetes patients who did not take a glitazone. The investigators tracked these records from 1999 – when glitazones were introduced to treat diabetes – until 2013. During that time, patients who used glitazones were 28 percent less likely to be diagnosed with Parkinson's disease than those who never took one of the meds, the study found. This association between glitazones and lower risk of Parkinson's ... Read more

Related support groups: Diabetes, Type 2, Parkinson's Disease, Actos, Pioglitazone, Avandia, ActoPlus Met, Avandamet, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Rosiglitazone, Metformin/Pioglitazone, Oseni, Alogliptin/pioglitazone, ActosPlus Met, Glimepiride/Pioglitazone, Duetact, Glimepiride/Rosiglitazone, Metformin/Rosiglitazone, Avandaryl

Brain Chemical Dopamine May Boost Risk-Taking in Healthy People

Posted 7 Jul 2015 by

TUESDAY, July 7, 2015 – Higher levels of the brain chemical dopamine may increase risk-taking behaviors in healthy people, much like dopamine-boosting drugs have been shown to do in people with Parkinson's disease, a small new study finds. British researchers discovered that raising dopamine levels in healthy adults led to them taking greater risks when gambling. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter associated with reward-based learning. Previous research has linked drugs that increase dopamine, such as L-DOPA, with compulsive gambling in Parkinson's disease patients. The new study included 30 people. They were asked to choose between safe and risky gambling options that resulted in monetary gains and losses. They did this after receiving L-DOPA and again after receiving an inactive placebo. The participants took more risks to get bigger rewards after receiving L-DOPA, but not the placebo. ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Dopamine, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Intropin

Exercise Benefits People With Parkinson's Disease: Study

Posted 24 Jun 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, June 24, 2015 – Parkinson's disease patients who begin regular exercise earlier have a much slower decline in quality of life than those who start exercising later, a new study finds. National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) researchers looked at information from nearly 3,000 patients. More than 1,300 reported doing little regular exercise before taking part in the study. Over two years, 500 of the inactive patients began to exercise more than 2.5 hours a week. The researchers compared patients who exercised regularly for the entire two years to people who were inactive at the start of the study, but then began a regular exercise routine. The study didn't note the type of workouts, just the total amount of exercise. After two years, scores on a questionnaire that measured the impact of Parkinson's on daily life in a number of areas – including mood, movement and social ... Read more

Related support groups: Benadryl, Parkinson's Disease, Diphenhydramine, Mirapex, Requip, Sinemet, Ropinirole, Levodopa, Pramipexole, Emsam, Azilect, Bromocriptine, Cogentin, Cabergoline, Benztropine, Carbidopa, Benadryl Allergy, Selegiline, Amantadine, Neupro

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