Depression is biggest factor affecting those with Parkinson’s
The Parkinson’s Outcomes Project, the largest study of its kind, included 5,500 diagnosed patients in four countries. About 50 percent of those with Parkinson’s experience depression, a higher rate than with other diseases, the study indicated. But, fatigue and other physicial symptoms of Parkinson’s can mask signals of depression, leading to undertreatment or a lack of depression recognition, the foundation researchers noted.
The study highlights the important of regular depression screening in long-term care facilities and careful monitoring of mood changes by nursing caregivers. The foundation also urges additional communication between a resident’s Parkinson’s physician and daily caregivers, including familiy members who may be able to share additional details on mood changes.
Parkinson’s disease affects about 1 million Americans and is the second-most common neuro-degenerative disease after Alzheimer’s disease. Most cases are diagnoses between the ages of 55 and 65.
Pamela Tabar was editor-in-chief of I Advance Senior Care from 2013-2018. She has worked as a writer and editor for healthcare business media since 1998, including as News Editor of Healthcare Informatics. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Kent State University and a master’s degree in English from the University of York, England.
Topics: Alzheimer's/Dementia , Clinical , Executive Leadership