Parkinson’s Day April 2022: An Opportunity to Understand the Disease and Spread Awareness

Posted On Apr 07, 2022

Dr. Nitti Kapoor Kaushal

Consultant - Neurology

Manipal Hospital-Patiala

Every year month of April is observed as Parkinson’s Awareness Month and April 11. The birthday of Dr. James Parkinson is celebrated globally as Parkinson’s day in honor of him and his discoveries. On this day communities around the world come together to raise awareness about this neurodegenerative disorder. At Manipal Hospital, we believe that there is little awareness and information about the disease and we need to eliminate all the misconceptions regarding it. Connect with us for Parkinson’s treatment in Patiala by our experienced neurologists.

What is Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson's disease (PD) is a brain disorder in which dopamine-producing cells in substantia nigra get degenerated which leads to a decrease in the level of dopamine, hence leading to its symptoms which are motor and non-motor. PD is predominantly a disease of the elderly, usually starting after the age of 60 years. However, it has been observed among people below 40 yrs as well. 

Symptoms of Parkinson's Disease

The symptoms can be categorized into the following two categories: motor symptoms and non-motor symptoms. Motor symptoms include four cardinal symptoms which are tremors at rest, bradykinesia which means slowness in activity and body movements, rigidity which means stiffness, and in later disease course patients develop postural instability because of which they have difficulty in balancing their body. In addition to motor symptoms patient may also develop non-motor symptoms which include depression, constipation, sleep disturbances, urinary incontinence, loss of smell, and hypotension. 

Causes of Parkinson's Disease

The exact cause of Parkinson's disease is unknown but research suggests that certain risk factors like certain environmental and genetic factors can be linked to it. Environmental include exposure to herbicides, pesticides, well water use, MPTP, and manganese.

A skilled medical practitioner/neurologist can diagnose it clinically by examining the patient. MRI brain is done to rule out structural disease. In certain cases, Dopamine scans can also help in diagnosis.

Treatment of Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease cannot be completely cured but can be treated to reduce symptoms. Several medications are available that can help in managing symptoms. Treatment for each person with Parkinson's disease is based on his/her symptoms. New treatment options are available like Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). It's a surgical procedure that involves implanting electrodes in the brain which deliver electrical impulses. Candidates for DBS are patients with motor fluctuations and abnormal uncontrolled symptoms (dyskinesias) affecting the quality of life.

Role of Diet in Parkinson’s Disease

Research has suggested that flavonoids help to slow down the progression of Parkinson’s disease.

Thus patients should eat:

  • Seasonal fruits, vegetables, and fibre-rich food and fluids that keep them energized and hydrated thus help to reduce constipation or low blood pressure problems.

  • They should drink 2 to 2.5 liters of water unless contraindicated and should drink till evening 6 or 7 pm. Avoid drinking at night time as it will increase nighttime micturition and will disturb sleep.

  • Green tea and the use of turmeric i.e. Haldi is beneficial as it will boost their immune system.

  • Avoid junk food and alcohol as junk food will increase constipation and alcohol will cause dehydration.

  • They should eat dry fruits and a diet with plenty of whole grains.

  • They should cut down saturated fat from meat and daily products.

Role of Exercise/Yoga

Benefits of exercise have been observed in both motor and non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. Some studies have reported the neuroprotective effect of exercise because it is believed to work by improving mitochondrial function and stimulating neuroplasticity which is the ability to maintain old connections and form new ones between neurons of the brain.

The exercise plan must include aerobic activity, strength training, balance, agility, multitasking, and flexibility. Yoga is also very beneficial in improving flexibility, strength, gait, stamina, and quality of life. So it is recommended to follow your physical therapist.

April is Parkinson’s awareness month, and we at Manipal Hospital would love to connect with patients suffering from the disease and offer the best medical support. Count on us for diagnosis, and treatment of Parkinson’s disease treatment in Patiala. We are one of the best neurology hospitals in Patiala offering the latest in neurological care with innovative therapies, new techniques and clinical trials developed by our world-class experts. 


Dr. Nitti Kapoor Kaushal

Department of Neurology

Manipal Hospitals, Patiala, Punjab


 

Call Us