Exploring Degenerative Diseases

Parkinson’s Disease

Did you know that one person in every 500 has Parkinson’s Disease? That equals approximately 127,000 people in the UK.

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive neurological condition caused by neuron degeneration in the brain and decreased Dopamine production. This reduces the brains ability to process and regulate normal body movement. Symptoms include:

  • Tremor (affecting one or both sides)
  • Loss of movement (reduced speed of movement)
  • Disturbance of balance / walking (reduced speed of walking)
  • Postural changes
  • Impaired swallow
  • Expressionless features

Dopamine can be used to treat Parkinson’s; a neurotransmitter which helps to increase the transmission of electrical signals between synapses. This can help to:

  • Reduce slowness of movement
  • Increase voluntary movements
  • Reduce rigidity
  • Reduce tremor

Physiotherapy plays a vital role in the treatment and management of Parkinson’s Disease. Physiotherapists are trained in biomechanics; monitoring range of movement, flexibility and postural awareness as well as providing preventative exercises to maintain movement. Neurophysiological treatment also includes proprioceptive facilitation to help initiate and facilitate movement whilst reducing rigidity and tone.