Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system characterized by a progressive loss of muscle control leading to slow movements (bradykinesia), rigidity, resting tremor and postural instability. As symptoms worsen it may be difficult to walk, talk, and perform simple daily tasks. Non-motor symptoms can include; anxiety, depression, psychosis and dementia.
Parkinson’s disease is the second most common type of neurodegenerative disease affecting approximately 11 million people worldwide. The burden of the disease is high for the individual patient, caregivers, and the healthcare system. A new study estimates by the year 2030, 1.2 million people in the United States will be living with the disease.
Results from the Parkinson’s Foundation study the, “Parkinson’s Prevalence Project” were published in July in the journal npj Parkinson’s Disease. The findings from the project estimate that 930,000 people in the United States will be living with Parkinson’s disease by the year 2020 and by the year 2030 that number will increase to 1.2 million people.
Previous estimates, of the prevalence of Parkinson’s disease in the U.S., varied widely and were based on small numbers and outdated data. The goal of the Parkinson’s Prevalence Project was to better estimate the prevalence of the disease in able to better guide future healthcare planning. By studying larger and more diverse populations a new estimate was established that is almost double the previous estimate.
Having a more accurate understanding of the prevalence of the disease is important for understanding the potential future burden to the healthcare system and to better allocate money for research and improved care.
There is currently no cure for Parkinson’s disease and available therapeutic approaches only treat the symptoms of the disease. Initially, you may experience significant symptomatic improvement from approved medicines, but over time the benefits begin to lessen. A surgical procedure called deep brain stimulation is also available, but typically offered to people with advanced Parkinson’s disease. Deep brain stimulation can effectively control diminished or erratic responses to treatment with levodopa. The surgery can involve risks including; infections, stroke or brain hemorrhage. Additionally, it does not keep the disease from progressing and is not effective in patients that do not respond to levodopa therapy.
Our experts at the Stem Cells Transplant Institute are using mesenchymal stem cell therapy to treat patients with Parkinson’s disease. Clinical trials have shown mesenchymal stem cells have the ability to differentiate, self-renew, suppress the immune system, reduce inflammation, and repair tissues.
Today the goal of stem cell treatment for Parkinson’s disease is to alleviate symptoms and improve neurological function. Patients have been very happy with the results and have experienced a significantly improved quality of life. However, for some patients, in time, dopaminergic neurons may a decline, symptoms may return and another stem cell treatment may be necessary.
Transplantation of stem cells at sites of neuronal degeneration is a very promising approach for the treatment of Parkinson`s Disease. Treatment at the Stem Cells Transplant Institute could help improve the symptoms of Parkinson´s disease:
- Slowed movement (bradykinesia)
- Rigid muscles
- Impaired posture and balance
- Loss of automatic movements
- Speech changes (softly, quickly, slur or hesitate before talking)
- Writing changes
Contact us today to learn more about stem cell therapy.
Marras, C., et. al., Prevalence of Parkinson’s disease across North America. npjParkinson’s Disease (2018) 4:21 ; doi:10.1038/s41531-018-0058-0