Parkinson's disease, which occurs when certain nerve cells in the brain are damaged and cannot produce dopamine adequately, is one of the many brain disorders treated by neurologists at The Sandra and Malcolm Berman Brain & Spine Institute.
It is estimated that three out of 100 people in the United States will have Parkinson's disease by age 70, making it the second most common neurodegenerative disease. Although the condition usually develops after age 65, approximately 15 percent of those diagnosed are under age 50.
Parkinson's disease can be indicated by a number of symptoms, including:
- Tremors or shaking
- Involuntary movements
- Shuffling gait
- Unexplained falls
- Slowness of movement
However, it is estimated that gait disorders affect 8 to 19 percent of non-institutionalized older adults in the United States so symptoms could indicate a different disorder other than Parkinson's. Such gait disorders, all treated at the Berman Brain & Spine Institute, include:
- Normal pressure hydrocephalus
- Parkinson's-plus condition
- Progressive supranuclear palsy
- Multiple system atrophy
- Corticobasel degeneration
- Vascular parkinsonism
- Drug-induced parkinsonism
The physicians of the Berman Brain & Spine Institute will perform a thorough evaluation, including video gait analysis, to make the correct diagnosis.
Our neurologists work closely with rehabilitation specialists and other team members to develop individualized plans of care. This interdisciplinary approach provides long-term care for those with chronic disease. Treatment for Parkinson's may include:
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Caregiver support groups
- Clinical trials of new medications
For more information about Parkinson's disease, gait disorders or The Sandra and Malcolm Berman Brain & Spine Institute, please call 1-888-747-8899. You can also view our brochures, Parkinson's Disease and Gait Disorders and Movement Disorders, as well as a profile of Howard D. Weiss, M.D., director of the Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorder programs.