World Parkinson's Day
- World Parkinson's
Day is observed on April 11th 2017 and this year marks
since Parkinson's was recognised as a health condition.
is the theme for this year's World Parkinson's Day, a resolve to increase
awareness about the disease
- Dr. B.Gangadhar,
Director, NIMHANS, talks about the disease, the symptoms and ways to
manage it in his exclusive interview with Medindia
is observed on April 11th
to raise awareness about the
neurodegenerative disease, characterized by movement disorder. In this
condition, nerve cells present in the brain produce insufficient amounts of
dopamine, which could be due to a genetic alteration or due to an environmental
trigger. There have been studies that have shown that exposure to certain
chemicals could also lead to this condition.
theme for this World Parkinson's Day is #UniteForParkinsons, that is aimed at
strengthening resolves against the condition.
‘ďLead an active lifeĒ -- Dr. B.Gangadhar stresses the importance of physical activity in delaying Parkinsonís.’
symptoms of this condition include:
- Stiffness in the
legs, arms and trunk
- Slow movement
- Trembling or
vigorous shaking of hands, arms, jaw, face and legs
- Lack of balance
symptoms of Parkinson's
and in one side of the body, however, as the condition progresses, it can
affect both sides of the body. People who suffer from Parkinson's find it
difficult to walk or to carry out simple tasks. They could also suffer from
sleep related problems, inability to chew, speak or swallow, as well as
there are no laboratory tests that are available to diagnose Parkinson's
disease. Doctors use a neurological examination and medical history to
establish the condition.
Age of Onset
disease is found to begin when the individual is around 60 years
of age, but there are instances when there is early onset
of the condition. Currently, there is no known cure for the condition and
treatment helps in managing the condition, and delaying progression. Deep brain stimulation
involves the use
of surgically implanted electrodes that produce electrical impulses which
result in the stimulation of parts of the brain that are associated with
Celebrating World Parkinson's Disease Day
is the birth anniversay of Dr. J Parkinson,
who was the first one to describe the
disease in "An Essay on the Shaking Palsy" in 1817. Dr. Parkinson detailed a condition which had lowered muscle power,
a tremulous motion that was involuntary and which could not be controlled even
if it was supported. The patients had an increased inclination to bend their
body forward, switching from walking to running involuntarily with
deteriorating intellectual ability.
Symbol of Parkinson's
Disease - Red Tulip
The red tulip
is one of
the most well-known symbols of Parkinson's disease and it was associated with
the day during the Luxembourg Conference, marking the 9th
Parkinson's Day. J.W.S Van der Wereld, a
Dutch Horticulturalist who suffered from this condition grew the red and white
tulip and named it after Dr. Parkinson.
Exercising for 2.5
hours Slows Parkinson's Progression
Parkinson's disease is associated with a difficulty to walk and
stiffness, with constant tremors. A new study published in the Journal of
Parkinson's Disease details a research study conducted on 3,400 patients in
North America, Israel and Netherlands. The characteristics of the patients that
were studied included
- Time taken to get
up from a chair
- Time taken to
walk about 10 feet
- Time taken to sit
back down on the chair
The patients were then asked to maintain 150 minutes of exercise
every week. The study by a research team from Northwestern University showed
that there was lower decline in the quality of life, as well as, mobility over a period of two years when compared to patients who
did not exercise.
As a part of World Parkinson's Day 2017, Medindia conducted an
exclusive interview with Dr.
, Director, The National Institute of Mental Health and
), on his pioneering groundbreaking research on
Parkinson's. Dr.Gangadhar has more than 30
of extensive experience in the area of mental health
, which includes clinical as well as academic
- He won the Sir CV Raman Award as well as the
Doctors Day Award
- He was a
consultant for WHO for Tsunami
- He is a part of
the expert panel for
Department of Science and Technology (DST)
- He is a part of
The National AYUSH Committee for Integrative Medicine
- His interests
include Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT), Public Health and Yoga, Community
Psychiatry and Mental health.
- He has authored
more than 300 research
: What are the causative factors for Parkinson's disease?
: The degeneration of the neurotransmittor dopamine in the basal
ganglia is the prime reason. This reduction triggers the symptoms. It is partly
genetic but there are many other factors that could contribute to the
development of this condition.
What are the treatment methods that are currently available?
The treatment methods depend on the severity of the disease,
whether it is in its early stage or in the late stage. Initially, the patient
is given medications to help cope with the condition, it increases the amount
of dopamine in the brain. There are surgical interventions that can be used to
treat the condition in severe cases.
: People with Parkinson's most often suffer from depression that
needs immediate attention. This is due to their "Western Nations get Parkinson's"
perception, your comments?
That is not true, there are many patients in India, with a
growing trend in the recent years.
Can Parkinson's affect people in their 30s?
Some people get Parkinson's syndrome, with many similar
characteristics and traits. These may be caused due to different level of
dopamine, medications used, encephalitis, lack of sufficient blood supply to
the brain and various types of intoxicants. This type of Parkinson's syndrome
may occur early, but it is not known if everyone with Parkinson's syndrome will
develop Parkinson's disease later n in life.
How can the disease progression be prevented?
Through the use of medicines and physical activities.
What is thecurrentresearch onParkinson's?
There is a lot of research on Parkinson's. India has pioneered a
lot of research. Dr. Verma from NIMHANS
developed a chemothalamectomy injection for Parkinson's, which involved injecting medicine into the
brain. This was way back in the 1960s and there was considerable relief for the
patients. Research continues to spearhead our initiative for Parkinson's.
Is there a cure in sight for people with Parkinson's disease?
There is no cure at the moment, it may take a while, but I am
confident with the steps that are being taken that it will be developed.
What is your advice for people on World Parkinson's Day 2017?
Lead an active life. Take your medicines regularly and visit your
neurologist periodically. An active life has been shown to slow progression of
the disease. Most people hesitate to do their daily chores once they are
diagnosed with the condition, which makes it worse for physical health, as well as, for mental health. Try to be as independent as possible.
- Parkinson's Disease - (https://medlineplus.gov/parkinsonsdisease.html)
- Parkinson's Awareness Week - (https://www.parkinsons.org.uk/content/parkinsons-awareness-week)
- WORLD REPORT
ON DISABILITY - (http://www.who.int/disabilities/world_report/2011/report.pdf)