by Nuno Luciano
Parkinson’s Disease affects generally elder adults, among about 90% of the known cases are diagnosed in people over the age of 60. Within that population, there is a small amount of variance, with the danger increasing from age 60 through age 75, and then going down sharply. Currently, Parkinson’s Disease is known to affect about 3% of the population over the age of 65. With present statistics and the probable aging of the population, authorities think that that percentage will double in the next 40 years.
When those with mild symptoms of Parkinsons (symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease that may be caused by other things, or could develop into Parkinson’s Disease), those numbers increase dramatically. 15% of those between the ages of 60 and 74 have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Between the ages of 75 and 84, that percentage rises to almost 30%.
However, when you look at it in terms of inception of symptoms, the picture changes. Fewer than 10% of new cases of Parkinson’s disease are diagnosed in younger adults – under age 40. The majority of new diagnoses of Parkinson’s disease are made between the ages of 60 and 75. After age 85, the danger of developing Parkinson’s Disease then seems to fall off dramatically.
What are the factors that effect diagnoses?
Men appear to be at greater risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease than women. Men have to deal with about double the risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease as women in any age group. Scientists think that estrogens may play a function in protecting the body from the chemical changes that occur in Parkinson’s Disease. This is further borne out by two facts – women who’ve had hysterectomies have a somewhat higher rate of Parkinson’s Disease, and women who’ve had estrogen replacement therapy have a lower rate of Parkinson’s Disease than other women their age.
Parkinson’s Disease seems to growth more quickly in men than women according to one study, and another found a difference in the way that symptoms present. Men are more prone to rigidity and tremor, and women more at danger from gait disturbance and shuffling.
Caucasians have a higher danger of developing Parkinson’s Disease than either African Americans or Asian Americans. People of European descent appear most prone to usual Parkinson’s Disease, but some studies hint at that non-Caucasians may be more at risk for a particular type of non-typical Parkinsonis that causes a disturbance in judgment.
In a small percentage of cases, family history may play a part in the inception of Parkinson’s Disease. People who have parents or brothers and sisters who had young-onset Parkinson’s Disease, in which symptoms develop before the age of 40, are more probable to develop Parkinson’s Disease than others their age. When Parkinson’s Disease was diagnosed at older ages, family history looks like it’s to play no part.
Oddly, cigarette smokers appear to have a diminished incidence of Parkinson’s Disease, which has led researchers to explore the probability that nicotine may give some protection from the fluctuations caused by Parkinson’s Disease. They are quick to point out that the other health problems associated with cigarette smoking are far too significant to think cigarette smoking as a way to avoid getting Parkinson’s Disease.
Caffeine also seems to have a protective result against Parkinson’s Disease. A study of Japanese-American men suggested that those who commonly drank coffee ran a lesser risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease than other men their age. The more coffee they consumed, the lower the risk.
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