Parkinson disease is a progressive neurologic disorder afflicting approximately 1 percent of Americans older than 60 years. The cardinal features of Parkinson disease are bradykinesia, rigidity, tremor, and postural instability. There are a number of neurologic conditions that mimic the disease, making it difficult to diagnose in its early stages. Physicians who rarely diagnose Parkinson disease should refer patients suspected of having it to physicians with more experience in making the diagnosis, and should periodically reevaluate the accuracy of the diagnosis. Treatment is effective in reducing motor impairment and disability, and should be started when a patient begins to experience functional impairment. The combination of carbidopa and levodopa is the most effective treatment, but dopamine agonists and monoamine oxidase-B inhibitors are also effective, and are less likely to cause dyskinesias. For patients taking carbidopa/levodopa who have motor complications, adjunctive therapy with a dopamine agonist, a monoamine oxidase-B inhibitor, or a catechol O-methyltransferase inhibitor will improve motor symptoms and functional status, but with an increase in dyskinesias. Deep brain stimulation is effective in patients who have poorly controlled symptoms despite optimal medical therapy. Occupational, physical, and speech therapy improve patient function. Fatigue, sleep disturbances, dementia, and depression are common in patients with Parkinson disease. Although these conditions are associated with significantly lower quality of life, they may improve with treatment. (Am Fam Physician. 2013;87(4):267-273.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||American family physician|
|State||Published - Mar 15 2013|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Family Practice