Local treatment program for Parkinson’s Disease addressed at June 27 lunch and learn seminar

With more than 50,000 new cases of Parkinson’s disease each year, it has grown to become the 14th leading cause of death in the United States. Although there is no cure for those living with the disease, there are treatment options that can reduce some of its debilitating effects. On June 27, Rolling Plains Memorial Hospital (RPMH) will be hosting a free Lunch and Learn Seminar on the hospital’s new treatment option for those in the region suffering from Parkinson’s disease. “We’ve identified a need to expand our service offering by including treatment options for those in Nolan County who could benefit from a physical therapy program targeting the effects of Parkinson’s disease,” said Cody Paty, a physical therapist at RPMH and presenter at the June 27 seminar. “Although there is no cure for the disease, there are treatment options that can help those with it better perform daily activities.” Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative brain disorder that progresses slowly. As the disease advances, its affects might impact a person’s motor ability as well as their neuropsychiatric well-being (speech, cognition, mood and behavior). There are no specific causes of Parkinson’s disease, nor are there cures. According to research, it is believed that risk factors might be linked to exposure to certain types of pesticides and use of tobacco. Paty says that the new Parkinson’s disease treatment program at RPMH is called LSVT-BIG. The program was adapted from a speech therapy technique called LSVT and adapted for movement. The program contain seven basic exercises that are demonstrated and are performed during each treatment as well as at home. There is also education on gait and transfers as well as specific functional tasks that each patient struggles with. Treatment time is currently at four days a week for at least four weeks. Each session is an hour long. Anyone with Parkinson's disease or other similar disease will benefit. “By the end of the program you should expect improved functional transfers, improved gait, better balance and more energy to perform activities of daily living,” Paty explained. “Patients will experience better results when treatment begins earlier in diagnosis.” To learn more about Parkinson’s disease and treatment options at RPMH, don’t miss the Lunch and Learn Seminar on June 27 at the RPMH Emergency Department classroom. The event will be held from noon until 1 p.m., and includes a brownbag lunch. The seminar is free to attend, but space is limited and expected to reach capacity. Interested individuals must register before June 26 by calling 325-235-1701 ext. 221. Rolling Plains Memorial Hospital provides healthcare for those in the communities they serve. Founded in 1976, Rolling Plains Memorial Hospital offers a wealth of medical services including: 24 hour emergency care, advanced radiology services including CT scanning and MRIs, outpatient lab, physical therapy, surgical services, swing bed services, patient education, home health and assistive services, and more. For additional information, please visit www.rpmh.net.