Symptoms and Signs of Parkinson's Disease: Symptoms and Test

Medical Author: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Medically Reviewed on 3/11/2019

Doctor's Notes on Parkinson's Disease: Symptoms and Test

Parkinson's disease (PD) is an age-related degenerative disorder of certain brain cells that affects body movements. In some people, one or more cognitive processes are impaired. When this impairment is severe enough to interfere with a person’s ability to perform daily tasks, this is considered Parkinson's disease dementia.

Symptoms of Parkinson's disease include tremors (shaking), stiffness of the trunk and limbs, slow of movement, loss of balance and coordination, shuffling, problems speaking, facial masking (expressionless, mask-like face), swallowing problems, and stooped posture. Parkinson’s patients (both those with and without dementia) may also become indecisive, fearful, dependent, and passive.

Dementia in Parkinson’s disease may range from mild to severe. Symptoms of Parkinson's disease dementia include the inability to make decisions, difficulty adapting to changes, disorientation in familiar surroundings, difficulty learning new things, problems with concentration, memory loss (short-term and long-term), difficulty sequencing events in correct order, and problems using and understanding language.

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REFERENCE:

Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.