Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder that affects predominately dopamine-producing (“dopaminergic”) neurons in a specific area of the brain called substantia nigra.
Symptoms typically develop a slow pace over years. These symptoms can progress differently from one person to another due to the diversity of the disease. People with PD may experience:
- Gait and balance problems
- Limb rigidity
- Tremor, mainly at rest and described as pill rolling tremor in hands. Other forms of tremor are possible
The cause remains largely unknown. Although there is no cure, treatment options vary and include physical therapy, medications and surgery. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) rated complications from PD as the 14th cause of death in the United States. While Parkinson’s itself is not fatal, disease complications can be serious.
LSVT® BIG- is standardized and was developed to provide Parkinson’s patients with improvements in daily activities to help them implement life long habits to improve their quality of life. Following treatment, researched shows improved ratings on tests of motor functioning in people with PD using LSVT big & also:
- Faster walking with bigger steps
- Improved balance
- Increased trunk rotation
- Improvements in daily activity, such as bed mobility
- Improved motor function
Research suggests that you should not wait until you experience a disability, impairment of function or loss of balance to start this program.
LSVT® BIG program begins with 16 sessions- four days a week for four weeks. Treatment sessions are one hour long and include an assigned home program practice for carryover of skills. The program focuses on high amplitude and repetitive motions performed with maximal effort, which helps produce bigger and more functional movements for everyday activities. LSVT BIG may slow motor deterioration, increase quality of life and POSSIBLY slow disease progression.