It is estimated that 6.3 million people have Parkinson’s disease worldwide, affecting all races and cultures. According to available statistics, 1.2 million people in Europe have the disease.1 If you’re one of them, you probably know this neurological movement disorder is neurodegenerative and currently has no cure – treatments are focused on reducing the symptoms of the disease. Medtronic has developed a therapy called Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) 25 years ago with Prof. Benabid and Prof. Pollak that has been proven to reduce some of the symptoms associated with Parkinson’s Disease. Today more than 125,000 people have benefited from Medtronic DBS.2
Parkinson's disease is a progressive, degenerative neurological movement disorder that affects approximately 6.3 million people worldwide.1 Although it typically develops after the age of 65, about 15% of people with the condition develop "young-onset" Parkinson's disease before reaching age 50.1
As Parkinson's disease progresses, it becomes increasingly disabling, making daily activities like bathing or dressing difficult or impossible. Many of the symptoms of Parkinson's disease involve motor control, the ability to control your muscles and movement.
The four primary symptoms of Parkinson's disease are:
Parkinson's disease is caused by the degeneration of a small part of the brain called the substantia nigra. As brain cells in the substantia nigra die, the brain becomes deprived of the chemical dopamine.
Dopamine, a neurotransmitter, enables brain cells involved in movement control to communicate, and reduced levels of dopamine lead to the symptoms of Parkinson's disease. According to the National Parkinson Foundation, 80% of dopamine-producing cells are lost even before the motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease appear.3
As dopamine continues to be lost Parkinson's disease often becomes increasingly disabling over time. If you suffer from Parkinson's disease you may have trouble performing daily activities such as rising from a chair or moving across a room. As the disease progresses, some people need to use a wheelchair or may become bedridden.
Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.