What do you know about Parkinson’s disease?

Immunohistochemistry of α-synuclein showing positive staining (brown) of black Lewy bodies in the substantia nigra of Parkinson’s disease.Credit: Wikipedia

April is Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month, a good opportunity to learn more about this progressive nervous system disorder.

According to the American Parkinson Disease Association, an estimated 1 million people in the United States and more than 10 million people worldwide have Parkinson’s disease.

The signs and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease vary from person to person. Early signs are mild and often overlooked. Symptoms often start on one side of the body and usually continue to worsen on that side, even after the symptoms begin to affect both sides. People with Parkinson’s disease can experience tremors, slowing of movement, muscle stiffness, changes in speech and writing, and impaired posture and balance.

The risk factors for Parkinson’s disease are:

  • Age: Young adults rarely experience Parkinson’s disease. It usually develops after middle age and increases in risk with age. People usually develop the disease when they are over 60 years old.
  • Inheritance: Having a relative with Parkinson’s disease increases the likelihood of developing Parkinson’s disease. However, the risk is still small unless the family has many relatives with Parkinson’s disease.
  • Gender: Men are more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than women.
  • Exposure to toxins: Continued exposure to herbicides and pesticides may slightly increase the risk of Parkinson’s disease.

Convincing evidence that type 2 diabetes is associated with an increased risk of Parkinson’s disease

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Quote: What do you know about Parkinson’s disease? (April 7, 2021) Obtained April 7, 2021 from

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What do you know about Parkinson’s disease?

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