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What is Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's disease, also called paralysis agitans, is a neurological disorder affecting about 1-2% of the population aged over 50 years, due to the degeneration of nerve cells in an area inside the brain (the locus Niger) and is characterized mainly by tremor, slowness of movement and stiffness.

Who is affected by Parkinson's disease?

Parkinson's disease seems to involve as many men as women and occurs in most cases between 50 and 75 years, but it sometimes starts before age 40.

This is a sporadic disease (affecting some patients in isolation) but for which there are familial forms a unique way.
Worldwide, Parkinson's disease often reaches more blacks than whites but seems more common in northern  countries such as Sweden and Africa.

Prevalence in Europe is approximately 150 per 100 000 inhabitants.
Prevalence is the number of cases of a disease or an event in a given population, and this at a time or in a given period.

The incidence is 15 per 100 000 inhabitants.
The impact, according to Monnerot-Dumaine, is "the number of cases of disease that began or who became ill during a given period in a population."

History of Parkinson's disease

This neurological condition has been studied initially by the English physician and amateur paleontologist James Parkinson (born in 1755 and died in 1824).

A few words about this doctor Parkinson were a general practitioner based in London, extremely curious, very interested in many disciplines, of course biology and medicine, but also paleontology and politics.

The symptoms he describes one patient and in three, people met in the street are: he said to them that their movements were rare, and they require a lot of energy and a willingness to move considerable. They are suffering from stiffness that tends to curl up on themselves, either in the trunk or limbs that are animated by a tremor at rest up. He notes that these disorders occur in the second half of life of these patients and without apparent cause, mainly affecting one side of the body and having an evolution of increasingly important but gradual.

Subsequently, the eminent neurologist Jean Martin Charcot (born in 1825 and died in 1893) propose to call all of these symptoms (syndrome) Parkinson's disease instead of paralysis agitans, in the late nineteenth century.

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