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Parkinson’s Disease Facts and Statistics: Did You Know…?

Parkinson’s disease facts can help you make sense of your diagnosis or care for a loved one with PD. Learn everything you need to know at HealthyPlace.

Researching Parkinson's disease facts and statistics can help prepare you for life after your diagnosis. If you've recently been told you have Parkinson's disease, you probably have a million questions surrounding your treatment options, symptoms and prognosis. During this time, it's important to seek information from trustworthy sources so that you can make well-informed decisions about your health. Learning Parkinson's disease facts and statistics can improve your quality of life with the condition, so here's what you need to know.

Parkinson’s Disease: Facts You Should Know

Whether you are newly diagnosed with Parkinson's disease or you've lived with the condition for a while, learning Parkinson's disease facts will help you understand your triggers and manage your symptoms. Educating yourself about Parkinson's disease will also help if you're caring for a loved one with PD.

Here are some facts about Parkinson's disease:

  • Parkinson's disease does not just affect older adults. Although most people with the disease are aged 60 or over, the condition can affect younger people too. Prominent cases include Michael J. Fox, who developed Parkinson's disease at age 29, and Muhammed Ali, who was diagnosed at 42.
  • No one knows precisely what causes Parkinson's disease. However, a combination of genetic and environmental factors (such as prolonged exposure to pesticides and toxic chemicals) are thought to increase your risk of developing the disease.
  • Treatment is different for everyone. Parkinson's is often described as a "bespoke" disease because it presents differently in each patient. Therefore, treatment for Parkinson's disease will be tailored to your specific symptoms and lifestyle.
  • Depression is common in those with Parkinson’s disease. Reports show that depression and anxiety can affect the overall health of patients with Parkinson's even more than the motor symptoms do. The good news is that mental health challenges are common in those with Parkinson's disease, so there are plenty of depression treatment options – ranging from exercise to talking therapies and medication.
  • There is no cure for Parkinson’s disease. However, scientists are testing new drugs and performing clinical trials to change this.
  • Parkinson’s disease isn’t fatal. While health complications can and do arise from Parkinson's disease, most doctors agree that the condition itself is not life-threatening. Most patients with Parkinson's disease die around the same time as others in their age cohort, usually from unrelated illnesses or old age.

Parkinson’s Disease Statistics

  • 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease every year.
  • Only 5% of patients with Parkinson's disease are younger than 60 when they get diagnosed.
  • 1% of the population over 60 and 5% of the population over 85 have Parkinson’s, making age the biggest risk factor for developing the disease.
  • After Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease is the second most common age-related neurodegenerative disorder.
  • Depression affects 50% of Parkinson’s disease patients, while anxiety presents in 40% of cases ("Parkinson’s Disease and Anxiety: Causes and Treatments").
  • Men are almost twice as likely to develop Parkinson's disease than women.

Learning the facts about Parkinson's disease can help you make sense of your diagnosis and feel more prepared for what's to come ("5 Stages of Parkinson’s Disease: Progression of Parkinson’s"). You will be in close contact with your healthcare provider as you navigate a Parkinson's diagnosis, but you may find doing your own research helpful. However, as with any medical condition, you should be careful where you get your information. This article links to other trusted sources where you can find Parkinson's disease facts and statistics.

article references

APA Reference
Smith, E. (2020, February 9). Parkinson’s Disease Facts and Statistics: Did You Know…?, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, October 20 from https://www.healthyplace.com/parkinsons-disease/information/parkinsons-disease-facts-and-statistics-did-you-know

Last Updated: February 17, 2020

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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