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Parkinson's Disease - When To Call a Doctor

If you develop a tremor

Urgent medical care isn't needed if you have had a tremor—shaking or trembling—for some time. But you should discuss the tremor at your next doctor's appointment.

If a tremor is affecting your daily activities or if it is a new symptom, see your doctor sooner.

Recommended Related to Parkinson's

Understanding Parkinson's Disease -- the Basics

Parkinson's disease, which mostly affects older people but can even occur in younger adults, results from the gradual degeneration of nerve cells in the portion of the midbrain that controls body movements. The first signs are likely to be barely noticeable -- a feeling of weakness or stiffness in one limb, or a fine trembling of one hand when it is at rest. Eventually, the shaking (tremor) worsens and spreads, muscles become stiffer, movements slow down, and balance and coordination deteriorate...

Read the Understanding Parkinson's Disease -- the Basics article > >

A written description will help your doctor make a correct diagnosis. In writing your description, consider the following questions:

  • Did the tremor start suddenly or gradually?
  • What makes it worse or better?
  • What parts of your body are affected?
  • Have there been any recent changes in the medicines you are taking or how much you are taking?

If you have Parkinson's disease

If you have been diagnosed with Parkinson's, call your doctor if:

  • You notice any significant change in your symptoms, such as severe episodes of freezing—a sudden loss of mobility—which may affect walking.
  • Your response to your medicine changes.
  • Any other symptoms occur, such as constipation, sexual problems, or incontinence.
  • You have symptoms of depression, such as feeling sad and hopeless and losing interest in daily activities.
  • You or your family notice that you have problems with memory and thinking ability.

Who to see

The following health professionals can help diagnose or treat Parkinson's disease:

Other health professionals who may be involved in your care include the following:

To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: December 05, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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