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Broader Parkinson's Treatment Recommended

The brain disorder Parkinson's disease, which leads to shaking and coordination problems, also leads to secondary orthopedic conditions, a U.S. study finds.

The study's author recommends all Parkinson's treatment plans include a multidisciplinary approach to address additional the secondary musculoskeletal health issues.

For instance, people with Parkinson's often move and walk less than non-suffers and generally stay indoors, the study finds.

Decreased movement may lead to bone loss, and reduced exposure to sunlight from staying indoors can decrease a person's vitamin D levels, needed to keep bones strong, the study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons said.

The combination of decreased bone density and instability from tremors and rigidity caused by the degenerative disorder greatly increase a person's risk of falling, breaking bones and osteoporosis, the study said.

Author Dr. Lee Zuckerman, chief resident of orthopedic surgery at State University of New York's Downstate Medical Center, recommended patients check their bone mineral density and get treatment to reduce the risk of fracture.

He also recommended physical therapy, vitamin therapy, medication to increase bone density and therapies to optimize gait and rigidity.


© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

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PDF Interprets: Bone Health Important for People with Parkinson’s

Treatment plans for people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) should include steps to maintain healthy bones, according to a report published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

Lead author, Lee M. Zuckerman, M.D. of the State University of New York’s Downstate Medical Center, noted that certain factors put people with Parkinson’s at a higher risk than the general population for bone fractures, osteoarthritis, and low bone mineral density.  These factors, which can include a lack of sunlight from staying indoors, as well as poor nutrition, can result in decreased levels of vitamin D, which is needed to keep bones strong.  Moving and walking less can also lead to decreased bone mineral density.  Weakened bones are more likely to break during a fall.  And after surgery to replace or mend a broken hip, or an arthritic knee or shoulder, Parkinson’s symptoms such as tremor can complicate healing.

Dr. Zuckerman recommends checking bone mineral density as part of a Parkinson’s treatment plan, and using medication to restore it when low.  In addition, he writes, a multidisciplinary approach is needed to prevent injuries.  This includes physical therapy and exercise to improve gait, for example, and medication to alleviate other Parkinson’s symptoms.  Such measures can help reduce the risk of fractures and improve recovery from surgery when it is necessary.

 

Source Date: Jan 05 2009
Source Publication: UPI
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