Living a long time with Parkinson's

My husbands' Parkinson's support group had a guest speaker , a neurologist, talk to us yesterday. We were able to ask many questions, and she even had a sense of humor, something I've never found in a neurologist before.

My husband is always saying he figures he will die soon, simply because he has Parkinson's. He is 77. I asked her what was the age of the longest living Parkinson's patient. She said she knew of some that had lived to be 100. She said Parkinson's patients die from something other than their disease, it could be a stroke, heart attack and so on. Everyone laughed over the question, but were glad I had asked. We were so relieved, we came home, he went for a good walk and then signed up for a cruise with the grand kids. Life is still left to be lived!

7 Replies

  • rp12, Yes, a cruise is always nice. It sounds as though your support group is doing its job.

  • Nice of you to share. It's always good to hear something positive.

  • Thank you so much for posting this--it's something I've wondered about but never had the courage to ask! Best wishes to you both and I hope you enjoy the cruise.

  • It's like a weight has been lifted, figuring there is a future and not to worry about it so much, even if it is only speculative. Good luck to you on your journey's ahead too!

  • Hi Rhyspeace. I have had Pd symptoms since 1963. I was only diagnosed in 1992. In 2002, because of all the actions I took in 1994, I was able to give up taking any Pd medication, and have not needed to see a neurologist since then.

    All this happened in 1994, after I started doing fast walking for one hour, three times a week, taking an MAO-b inhibitor as my only Pd medication, Getting rid of ALL harmful stress, taking a positive attitude towards my Pd, and doing a lot of brain exercise.

    I did not start the walking for one hour I started for 20 minutes, because I had been walking on a treadmill in the gym for 20 minutes every day for the previous 26 years. Every second week I increased the time by five minutes. I only went as far as one hour, which is regarded as the optimum time for fast walking.

    I have written a book about it and Doctor Norman Doidge, who wrote the book, "The Brain's Way of Healing" and "The Brain That Changes Itself", came to see me to verify the truth of all my claims. He examined my medical records in my GP's office and also the two neurologists, who all have examined me extensively. He satisfied himself that I was telling the truth and I then took him all over South Africa to meet people with Parkinson's who I have been able to help.

    That was in 2011. His latest book came out in 2015 and my story is in Chapter 2.

    I am now 82 years old and this morning I entered a 5 kilometre cross-country race against people of all ages. It was run by ParkRun. You may have heard of it. I managed to finish the 131st male in a field of 345. I finished in the top two thirds of the field, and I was the oldest contestant. I still have Pd, and I have learned to live with it.

  • The Reverend Billy Graham has PD, and I think he had his 98th birthday a few months ago.

  • Thank you, I didn't know that!

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