Parkinson's disease vs parkinson's symptoms, what is the difference? Does treatment differ?

I have always wondered about my diagnosis and though it has taken years, I have finally accepted it, now again, I am questioning it. I was diagnosed with pd 11 years ago in my early 40's after noticing a slight tremor in my left hand. However, worth noting in my mind, yet seemed not of interest to the 2 neurologists that I've seen over the years is that just prior to developing the tremor, I may have had exposure to carbon monoxide fumes. First, my office at work was located right beside the loading dock and when the trucks would load or unload, they'd leave them running and the fumes would seep in to my office, the smell was sickening. This was not a short term exposure, but over time. Second, we had an ice storm and were without power for several days, so I basically spent all day long during this time in the room where our wood stove was located, in order to keep warm. The problem was that where I sat was right beside a window and door where located just outside was the generator running to power our refrig and well and a few lights. Though I never felt sickly, I remember having a headache, because I seldom get headaches. Over the years my tremor has never gone further than my left hand, though I do experience tingling in my left leg at times and that leg/foot always seem to be out of sink, as it may feel weak and I stub my toe alot. The rest, not sure if it's just me, aging or my meds, but have some stiffness and slowed movements with muscle weakness. In addition, I have somehow developed a sort of OCD and anxiety disorder and my concentration is not like it used to be. I used to be a multi tasker, worked full time in a management position, took care of the kids, worked on our farm and ran a part time home business. Now, the kids are gone, my job became too overwhelming, I go from one thing to another, rarely accomplishing anything. I hate my meds, though they help my stiffness, gaite and slowed movements, they cause other symptoms. I feel I have lost the once vibrant, social, hard working me that I used to be and would very much like her back, but probably not nearly as much as my husband would.

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  • hi sedona...well you have described your symptoms like a mirror image of myself. diagnosed at 47, 9 years ago. you even listed them in the same order. i think you can be rest assured it is parkinson disease. everyone starts and continues differently in their symptoms but there are usually pre defined common denominaters amongst them. unfortunately some progess more quickly in certain people i am lucky to have had 9 years of fairly slow progession. yet i have had the stumbling , the slight tremor,stifness, weakness of muscles, anxiety,frustratingly slow movements and lack of focus, never completing tasks, overwhelmed by simple things and at times wonder where the old me has gone...i think parkinsons is caused by toxins in one form or another be it carbon mon., stress, trauma etc which weakens the nervous system as arthritis weakens the joints. the sooner the better they can make an artificial replacement.....but i suppose thats what our medications are about.....

  • Sedona

    Like you was diognosed with PD a year ago, age 64. Like you led a very active life, went back to college at 50 to study art full time , after which opened a shop in same college to provide art and other student supplies. Two years in asked if could provide photocopying service to teachers. Was provided with large photocopier and photocopies rose to abouT 30,000 copies per day. The space I was given had no windows and although ventilation was supposed to be installed by college , this never happened. Over a period of about 2 to 3 years my walking and balance deteriorated , I went to my doctor several times, osteoarthritis was suggested among other things overall this was to be expected ...did Alexander technique, gym and Physio. Tremor in left leg when walking. Asked gp to refer me to neurologist, waited four years to get appointment and Parkinsons was diognosed. Undertook Physio which was great and my walking has improved a little, balance still bad. On second visit neurologist said I had not got the parkinsons walk and so I'm supposed to by atypical!

    Did research on connection between parkinsons and carbon monoxide and there is a strong connection and can present itself with very similar symptoms.

    I would like to investigate further but am not meeting with much success . A blood test to check levels of carbon in system can be done and as far as I know a treatment of oxygen is the way to remove carbon. I have asked by doctor to arrange this but was told this is not available here (ireland) !! My worry is my meds, which have no effect whatsoever

    I am seeing neurologist next month and intend to pursue this will not give up on that blood test even if have to go to another country...

    I think you should investigate carbon monoxide theory as it can do no harm and would at least put your mind at rest

    Wish you all the best in your future

  • Ask yur neuro to test you for PSP/MSA as the main thing with them is that parkinsons meds dont work - i hope it is PD though - good luck wirh your quest for the oxygen treatment it sounds very promising

  • Have you considered getting a Dat-scan? It is considered to be conclusive for PD.

  • I had a Dat-scan done and it was very conclusive......

  • You're experience is similar to mine. My car had a faulty exhaust system and had problems with heart palpitations. After getting another car the palps went away and suspected CO poisoning. This occurred in my late 30s. Now 55 yrs and diagnosed w/ PD 5 years ago. My father was diagnosed w/ PD in his late 70's. I've concluded that many of us have a genetic predisposition for PD and a toxic insult such as CO, pesticides, or heavy metals sped up the eventual symptoms. Interesting why this many times occur in early 50's or late forty's. I believe when you reach this age your body's repair mechanisms cannot keep up with all the damage......hence the cancers, arthritis, diabetes, and PD.

  • I agree with you DeanGreen, I believe that we are all predisposed to some type d disease, it's in our genes. However, if you live a healthy lifestyle, you can prevent or at the very least, delay their onset. I believe that enviromental toxins, poor diet, stress, etc can trigger those diseases earlier in life. It seems so simple now, wish I had this same clairity when I was much younger.

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