riverhills neuroscience logo

Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s Disease

About Parkinson’s Disease

Every year, around 90,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. At Riverhills Neuroscience, with an office in Crestview Hills, Kentucky, and three Cincinnati, Ohio, offices in Norwood, Anderson, and West Cincinnati, the multidisciplinary practice can diagnose Parkinson’s disease as well as provide comprehensive, patient-focused treatment to protect patients’ health and wellness. Call the nearest office to schedule an appointment or request more information for expert Parkinson’s disease care online today.

Parkinson’s Disease Q&A

What is Parkinson’s disease?

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects dopamine-producing neurons in a part of your brain called the substantia nigra.

It’s a slowly progressive disease that affects the part of the brain that controls motor function. It causes tremors, muscle rigidity, balance issues, slowed movement, and issues like a shuffling gait.

People with Parkinson’s may also experience non-movement issues like cognitive decline. Parkinson’s disease risk rises with age, although a small percentage of patients are diagnosed before age 50.

What causes Parkinson’s disease?

The exact cause of Parkinson’s hasn’t been identified. Medical researchers, however, have found that the presence of Lewy bodies — microscopic clumps of proteins in your brain cells — contribute to Parkinson’s disease.

Additionally, studies show that experiencing a traumatic brain injury like a concussion can significantly increase the chances of developing the disease. 

Having a close family member with the disease may also increase the risk.

What are the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease?

The symptoms of Parkinson’s disease vary between patients and often develop so gradually that you might not notice early warning signs. Some of the symptoms include:

  • Shaking or tremors in your hands or fingers, which can spread through the limb
  • Changes in speech like hesitation, slurring, or inflection loss
  • Slowed movement
  • Loss of automatic movements
  • Movement disorders
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Reduced balance
  • Stooped posture
  • Handwriting changes

Symptoms usually begin on one side of the body and gradually spread and worsen.

How is Parkinson’s disease diagnosed?

Riverhills Neuroscience comprehensively analyzes the patient’s entire body, including extensive work-ups that often take up to an hour. No single test can diagnose Parkinson’s disease, so several tests and/or procedures might be involved, including any combination of the following:

  • Blood tests
  • MRIs
  • CT scans
  • PET scans
  • DAT scans
  • Brain ultrasounds

It can take time to confirm a Parkinson’s disease diagnosis. Rest assured that you are in expert hands at Riverhills Neuroscience, and they won’t rest until they identify the condition causing symptoms.

How is Parkinson’s disease treated?

Though there’s no cure for Parkinson’s disease, Riverhills Neuroscience creates customized treatment plans to manage symptoms and help maintain the patient’s health and quality of life.

For example, they can prescribe carbidopa-levodopa, dopamine agonists, and other medications that regulate dopamine levels and reduce symptoms like tremors.

Riverhills Neuroscience is hosting a clinical research study to evaluate Tapavadon, a potential new treatment for early- and late-stage Parkinson’s disease. This treatment involves taking tablets daily.

To find out more about Parkinson’s disease and receive outstanding personalized care, diagnosis, and treatment, call the nearest office or request an appointment online today.