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Discuss current treatment strategies for Parkinsons disease How can the patients quality of life be preserved Are costs to the community of developing these new treatment strategies justified Justify your answer Parkinsons is a neurodegenerative disease which is caused by a loss of dopamine producing cells in the brain The disease is progressive and debilitating and is outwardly manifested in tremors stiffness and rigidity bradykinesia and postural instability The disease affects everyone differently that is these symptoms are covered to a different extent for each sufferer and as such treatment of the disease is highly individualised There is no current cure for Parkinsons disease and most of the management of the disease involves the treatment of symptoms and the reduction of the side effects of current drug treatments Currently quality of life in Parkinsons patients involves finely balancing medication with side effects to maintain functionality This is so where patients have a cyclical experience undergoing periods of reduced movement stiffness akinesia before drug treatment and dyskinesias other side effects after treatment with limited time in between where they experience normal movement Current Treatment Strategies for Parkinsons Disease DRUG TREATMENTS Dopamine Since dopamine itself cannot pass through the blood-brain barrier the introduction of additional dopamine neurotransmitter into the bloodstream isnt an idyllic treatment The current leading drug for the treatment of PD symptoms is Levodopa or L-dopa which although itself passes through the blood-brain barrier transforms to dopamine quickly before reaching the brain Consequently large amounts need to be taken which is particularly detrimental when it is noted that it has significant side effects such as severe nausea dizziness possible liver damage and dyskinesias The side effects of Levodopa can however be mitigated by a major drug used in conjunction with it called Carbidopa Carbidopa delays the conversion of Levodopa to dopamine allowing a greater proportion to reach the brain and reducing the amount which needs to be administered The
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