Parkinson’s disease

A progressive medical disorder of the nervous system characterized by the slow, gradual onset of symptoms including tremors and stiffness.  It progresses over years leading to major problems with movements, stiffness, speech and swallowing.  Its cause is unknown.  The disease affects predominately the dopamine producing neurons in the substantia nigra.   It can be associated with the presents of Lewy Bodies in the cells.  It occurs in approximately 0.3% of the population. It is primarily a condition of the elderly and is seen in 4% of those over 80 years of age.

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