’sunderstanding of her situation: Mrs Seedat did indicate that her son did some initial ‘research’ as to what her condition entails. However, the credibility and the source of this information cannot be seen as academically valid and reliable. The discussion with her son as to the physical, cognitive and psychological symptoms of PD just misinformed her further as to the symptoms and possible overlapping symptoms of HD and AD, creating more confusion and concerns. It is clear that Mrs Seedat requires more information and a better understanding with regards to PD. I addressed her concerns and provided her with relevant and accurate scientific information as well as the expected short and long-term symptoms and functioning of her condition. I also explained the differences between the different neurological conditions (Parkinson’s, Huntington’s and Alzheimer’s disease). Many of the better known age-related neurodegenerative conditions involve a collection of damaged brain cells, but there are other similarities as well. Depending on which symptoms appear first varies largely among the affected individual. During the course of PD, AD and HD, some symptoms appear to be more dominant and have a greater effect on the individual. PD is a progressive neurological disease and usually develops gradually, sometimes starting with a barely noticeable tremor in just one hand. We call it progressive because it worsens over time, and neurodegenerative because there is a loss or degeneration of neurons in the brain. These specific neurons are called dopamine neurons and are responsible for chemical signals which are important to make normal movement. These dopamine neurons are located within the brain just above the spinal cord in an area called the midbrain. When these neurons are lost there is a reduction in the amount of dopamine in the brain and with this reduction of dopamine, we start to see the main movement signs of PD. Some of the signs or symptoms that a person with PD will notice is shakiness, often in the form of a tremor which may be in the hand or fingers. Another sign may be stiffness, this is usually felt when the person bends parts of their body like an arm or leg. This movement does not feel very smooth or fluid instead it may feel rigid.
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7 757524 49937502 PYC4813 Slowed down movement is another sign associated with the disease. This happens because it takes longer to complete a move. This feeling is similar to the feeling of movement when your body is in water. You are able to move but it just takes longer to do so. Balance and posture are other problems that a person will develop, however this is usually experienced after a few years of having the disease. You may feel unsteady or unstable when walking or standing still and your posture may become stooped.