What is Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive neurological disorder that is caused by damage to the nerve cells that produce dopamine (a chemical that is needed for control of muscles and movement). It primarily affects control of the body movement but there are also other symptoms which accompany Parkinson’s Disease, including tremor, slowness of movement, stiff muscles, balance and coordination problems which worsen as the disease progresses.

How is it commonly treated?

There is no cure for Parkinson’s Disease but treatment is available to relieve symptoms. Appropriate treatment is based on individual circumstances but may include medication, surgery (such as deep brain stimulation), lifestyle changes and exercise. Physical, occupational and speech therapies can help with walking and balance problems, eating and swallowing challenges and speech problems.

Factsheet: Medical Cannabis and Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s Disease factsheet

Parkinson’s Disease and Medical Cannabis

There is a lack of clinical studies regarding the effectiveness of medical cannabis on Parkinson’s Disease symptoms and whether certain cannabis formulations may be more effective than others.

Combining medical cannabis with standard medications might offer a new approach to the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease, making it more effective. However, more studies are needed to assess the long-term safety of combining medical cannabis with other Parkinson’s Disease medications.

Some studies have found that medical cannabis may be therapeutic when used for non-motor symptoms and in relieving some of the side effects of standard medical treatments, such as nausea and insomnia.

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Parkinson’s Australia advocates for people living with Parkinson’s Disease as well as supporting their families and carers, researchers and health professionals. They promote the best possible quality of life for people with Parkinson’s Disease. HOME | Parkinson's Australia (parkinsons.org.au)


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