Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s is a degenerative disease that affects the central nervous system, particularly the mid-brain area, in which the dopamine-generating cells can be seen to progressively die off over time for unknown causes. Treatment protocols for the most part concentrate on enhancing the patient’s quality of life and relieving the physical symptoms which for the most part are movement-related, particularly in the disease’s early stages. Symptoms that may develop include:

  • Tremors
  • Slowing of movements
  • Rigid muscles
  • Walking difficulties
  • Behavioral and cognitive difficulties
  • Dementia
  • Depression and emotional problems
  • Sleep disorders
  • Sensory disruption

Parkinson’s disease tends to occur most in people over 50 years of age, though early onset Parkinson’s is also well documented.

As yet a cure has not been found for Parkinson’s disease and some of the medications used to treat early stages of the disease may later induce unwanted side effects including involuntary writhing movements (dyskinesia) or stiffness.

These can be alleviated to some extent through physical therapies such as gentle rocking to defuse muscle tension, slow rotational body movements, meditation, and deep breathing exercises which help to expand chest wall capacity.

In addition, studies have shown that physical therapies undertaken by a trained therapist are generally more effective than programs implemented by patients alone.

In Revivo’s intensive body suit treatment protocol the patient wears special skeletal clothing that promotes correct body alignment and posture while performing a repetitive series of different exercises that isolate different muscles and muscle groups. By constant repetition and progressively more difficult exercises, Parkinson’s patients may be able to increase their endurance, strength, range of motion, flexibility, walking speed and gait, and sense of well-being. Revivo therapists can also assist with the learning to properly use such orthotic devices as walkers and canes that can be useful aids to patients who display the flexed, forward posture or slowness of movement (hypokinesia) that are commonly associated with Parkinson’s disease.

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