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What Are the Signs of Parkinson’s Disease, and How Can It Be Treated?

While there are about 500,000 new diagnosed cases of Parkinson’s disease (also referred to as PD) every year, it’s estimated that more than one million Americans suffer from it. The figure takes into account the fact that about half of those who suffer from the condition go undiagnosed. Parkinson’s is one of the most common neurodegenerative disorders in people over the age of 60, and it affects everything from neurological to motor functions.

Parkinson’s also affects the caregivers and loved ones of patients with this condition, making it incredibly challenging to deal with. Though there is no definitive cure, there are many treatments and strategies that have been shown to slow its progression and improve symptoms, especially when there is early intervention. Here are some of the signs to look for if you think you or someone you know may have early onset of Parkinson’s:

Tremors in the Legs, Arms, Hands, Jaw, or Head

Tremors are a major sign of Parkinson’s and typically appear in the hands, legs, arms, jaw, and head. Tremors can be mild or intense and may be repeated or spaced out depending on what the person is doing and how far the disease has progressed. For many, tremors interfere with their day-to-day activities, including shaving, eating, and writing. Tremors caused by Parkinson’s differ from essential tremor, which can be effectively treated with MR-Guided Focused Ultrasound. With proper diagnosis, your neurosurgeon can recommend the appropriate treatment for your condition.

Muscle Stiffness and Contraction

Parkinson’s also causes muscle stiffness and contraction, preventing certain muscles from moving for long periods. This is often painful and hinders activity due to a limited range of motion and may lead to cramps and imbalance. Incidentally, poor balance and coordination are other major signs of Parkinson’s and can lead to serious injuries and falls.

A white table with a model of a brain and different oral medications.

Difficulty or Slowness in Moving

Another key symptom of Parkinson’s is slowness in moving, known as bradykinesia. This may appear as sudden halts and pauses or jerks in movement. This symptom may not always be enough to diagnose Parkinson’s, but when paired with tremors and other signs, your doctor may begin tests and other screening methods to identify this issue.

Emotional, Mental, and Other Physical Changes

Since Parkinson’s affects a person’s physical abilities, their mental health may also suffer. Other signs can include emotional and mental changes, such as depression, memory problems, urinary issues, constipation, and more.

If you or a loved one is experiencing these physiological and neurological symptoms or you’re concerned about the possibility that they may be suffering from Parkinson’s disease, visit our neurosurgery center in Webster, TX, to learn more about treatment. Houston Physicians Hospital Webster is home to some of the Houston area’s leading neurosurgeons and specialists with access to the latest treatments like deep brain stimulation.


Visit our Parkinson’s disease webpage to learn more and scroll down to the bottom to find a neurosurgeon who’s right for you. Once there, click on their bio to schedule an appointment directly with their office.  All of the physicians shown practice at our Hospitals in Webster TX.