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What makes Parkinson's disease hard to predict?

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Parkinson’s disease comes with two main buckets of possible symptoms. One affects your ability to move and leads to motor issues like tremors and rigid muscles. The other bucket has non-motor symptoms, like pain, loss of smell, and dementia.

You may not get all the symptoms -- and you can’t predict how bad they’ll be, or how fast they’ll get worse. One person may have slight tremors but severe dementia. Another might have major tremors but no issues with thinking or memory -- and someone else may have severe symptoms all around.

On top of that, the drugs that treat Parkinson’s work better for some people than others. All that adds up to a disease that’s very hard to predict.

From: How Parkinson’s Disease Progresses WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

UpToDate: “Clinical Manifestations of PD.”

Parkinson’s Disease Foundation: “What Is Parkinson’s Disease?” “Understanding the Progression of Parkinson's Disease.”

U.S. National Library of Medicine: “Non-motor Symptoms of Parkinson Disease: Update on the Diagnosis and Treatment,” “Premotor and non-motor features of Parkinson’s disease,” “The progression of non-motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease and their contribution to motor disability and quality of life.”

European Parkinson’s Disease Association: “Parkinson’s Progression.”

Parkinson Canada: “Progression of Parkinson’s Disease.”

Partners in Parkinson’s: “What Are the Stages of Parkinson’s Disease?”

Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation: “Stages of PD,” “Disease Progression,” “About Parkinson’s.”

American Parkinson Disease Association: “Common Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.”

National Parkinson Foundation: “Non-Motor Symptoms.”

National Institute of Mental Health: “What Is Psychosis?”

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on September 13, 2017

SOURCES:

UpToDate: “Clinical Manifestations of PD.”

Parkinson’s Disease Foundation: “What Is Parkinson’s Disease?” “Understanding the Progression of Parkinson's Disease.”

U.S. National Library of Medicine: “Non-motor Symptoms of Parkinson Disease: Update on the Diagnosis and Treatment,” “Premotor and non-motor features of Parkinson’s disease,” “The progression of non-motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease and their contribution to motor disability and quality of life.”

European Parkinson’s Disease Association: “Parkinson’s Progression.”

Parkinson Canada: “Progression of Parkinson’s Disease.”

Partners in Parkinson’s: “What Are the Stages of Parkinson’s Disease?”

Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation: “Stages of PD,” “Disease Progression,” “About Parkinson’s.”

American Parkinson Disease Association: “Common Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.”

National Parkinson Foundation: “Non-Motor Symptoms.”

National Institute of Mental Health: “What Is Psychosis?”

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on September 13, 2017

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