Barbados’ Chief Medical Officer says more people are being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease at an earlier age.
Dr Joy St John made the disclosure this morning at the Limegrove Cinemas during a seminar on the illness held by the Barbados Parkinson Trust.
“Most of us have been led to believe that the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease are associated with aging and that the disease usually affects persons over the age of 50. However, there have been more cases of early onset of the disease and emerging data has shown that during the past several years it has been estimated and five to ten per cent of persons suffering from the disease are under the age of 40 years,” she told the gathering.
The Oxford Dictionary defines Parkinson’s as a progressive disease of the nervous system marked by tremor, muscular rigidity, and slow, imprecise movement, chiefly affecting middle-aged and elderly people. It is associated with degeneration of the basal ganglia of the brain and a deficiency of the neurotransmitter dopamine.
Over one thousand Barbadians have been diagnosed with the condition.
“It is these types of forum which provide the opportunity for persons to deliberate as well as to set the roles as they work closely together in other to seek new strategies to enhance the lives of persons suffering from Parkinson’s disease,” Dr St John said.