By Dr. Brian McDonough

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disease that affects the nervous system in such a way that it slowly begins to degenerate. In some cases the damage can be detected up to twenty years before the onset of symptoms.

In the early stages symptoms can be as vague as difficulty smelling things, constipation and fatigue. Of course those vague symptoms could have nothing to do with Parkinson’s disease.

Once the disease has taken hold the symptoms begin to really impact movement. People usually have rigidity, a shuffling walk and a tremor. There are treatments available that can be helpful and excellent research is being done to help find other newer treatments.

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