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Day #16

Treatment alternatives…
In the Twelve years since Parkinson’s made its appearance in my life there’s been great strides in the treatment options available to those of us who are in the throes of this disease.
Though Carbidopa/Levodopa remains the gold standard in pharmaceutical treatment for many, other drugs are also available. As a side note, Carbidopa/Levodopa was made available in 1967!
There are time release options and some that trick your brain into thinking that it is making more Dopamine, while others deliver Dopamine via a pump infusion. One of the biggest obstacles is something called the Blood Brain Barrier. This membrane is vital to keeping unwanted particles from entering your brain and causing problems. Unfortunately, it also inhibits the absorption of many pharmaceutical drugs to reach the area where it does the most good. I’ve seen research on an interesting technique to deliver medication where an MRI guided Ultrasound will open up a portion of the Blood Brain Barrier long enough to deliver the drug where needed, then close it!
Other studies are also being conducted on the Vagus Nerve, the largest nerve in your body that goes from the gut directly to the brain.
The benefits of physical activity and exercise are being studied as a way of reducing the amount of drugs that are needed.
DBS Surgery is an excellent choice for many people who are experiencing Tremors as a main symptom. Electrolytes are placed in the brain at strategic locations with thin wires that connect to a stimulator in the chest. I opted for this choice three and a half years ago and it was the best choice I ever made! (Aside from marrying my Wife) The technology is evolving at an unprecedented pace in history and I am optimistic that a cure will be found…in my lifetime 😎

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