is a slowly progressing, degenerative disease that is usually associated with the following symptoms, all of which result from the loss of dopamine-producing brain cells:
- Tremor or trembling of the arms, jaw, legs, and face
- Stiffness or rigidity of the limbs and trunk
- Bradykinesia (slowness of movement)
- Postural instability, or impaired balance and coordination
Dopamine is a substance produced in the body that has many effects, including smooth and coordinated muscle movement. About 60,000 Americans are newly diagnosed with Parkinson's disease each year, and more than 1 million Americans affected at any one time. In addition, more people suffer from Parkinson's disease than multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis combined.
Although at this time, there is no known cure, many forms of treatment are available to help minimize symptoms, including deep brain stimulation (DBS) which is offered at Winchester Medical Center to appropriate patients.
For more information on Parkinson's Disease or DBS, call 540-536-4157.