Parkinson's disease medical treatment
When you have Parkinson’s disease, it can be a daily struggle dealing with both physical and psychological symptoms. Fortunately, there are an increasing number of options for Parkinson’s disease medical treatment. Most of the medications to treat symptoms of Parkinson’s disease target the brain’s dopamine system and aim to supplement or enhance the decline in available dopamine. These dopaminergic medications are often used in combination with other types of medications to help relieve Parkinson’s disease symptoms that may occur in some patients, such as depression, sleeping troubles, constipation and other Parkinson’s-related issues. While very effective, Parkinson’s disease medical treatment has potential side effects and should be reviewed with you by your movement disorder specialist.
When you’ve been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, you’re usually initially treated with a number of different medications in an attempt to control some or all of the Parkinson’s disease symptoms. One commonly used medication is levodopa (Sinemet®), which can partially replace the neurotransmitter known as dopamine, an essential chemical in the brain which is deficient when you have Parkinson’s disease.
Many medications are very effective in treating Parkinson’s disease symptoms. However, they may lose their effectiveness or have unwanted side effects, such as dyskinesia (abnormal movements). Additionally, patients can suffer from severe on/off motor fluctuations over time. Since Parkinson’s disease is progressive, medications which may have been effective for a long period of time may become less effective as the disease progresses.