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Non-Motor Symptoms

Parkinson’s disease (PD) a movement disorder characterized by four hallmark symptoms that help movement disorder specialists make the diagnosis:

1. Tremor

2. Bradykinesia

3. Rigidity

4. Postural instability

In addition to motor symptoms, most people develop other non-motor issues related to Parkinson's. Non-motor symptoms are not noticeable to others but are common and can affect the quality of life for people with PD. Some symptoms, such as loss of smell, constipation, depression and REM sleep behavior disorder can occur years before the diagnosis of PD.

Non-motor symptoms include:

  • Cognitive decline: problems with attention, planning, language, memory or even dementia

  • Constipation

  • Early satiety: feeling of fullness after eating small amounts

  • Excessive sweating, often when wearing off medications

  • Fatigue

  • Dandruff (dryness of scalp)

  • Hallucinations and delusions

  • Loss of sense of smell or taste

  • Mood disorders, such as depression, anxiety, apathy and irritability

  • Orthostatic hypotension: drop in blood pressure when standing

  • Pain

  • Sexual problems, such as erectile dysfunction

  • Sleep disorders, such as insomnia, excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD), vivid dreams, Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)

  • Urinary urgency, frequency and incontinence

  • Vision problems, especially when attempting to read items up close

  • Weight loss


Source: Parkinson's Foundation

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