Getting the Most out of Parkinson's Disease MedicationsMonday, April 23, 2012 - 14:58
To get the most out of the medications:
- You should never compare your treatment schedule with those of other people suffering with Parkinson's Disease. You are all different. Take the medication as prescribed by your doctor. While this advice sounds obvious, it is important since the medication has been individually adjusted for your symptoms. Remember that your doctor probably has more clinical experience in treating people with Parkinsonâ€™s disease than anyone else who is likely to give you advice.
- Make sure you understand the expected benefit and potential early side effects of a drug before you leave the physicianâ€™s office.
- Side effects of anti-Parkinson drugs are reversible by lowering the dosage or discontinuing the treatment.
- Do not increase or abruptly stop any of your drugs without consulting your physician.
- Taking medications on an empty stomach often leads to increased side effects.
To read in detail about all the medications for Parkinsonâ€™s Disease please go to Medications Used To Treat Parkinson's Disease
Need To Know:
Is it safe to take other drugs while on PD medication?
Most drugs are safe to take with antiparkinson drugs. However,
Two of the major side effects of anti-parkinson medication can be managed.
- Nausea is much less common with controlled-release SinemetTM, which is absorbed more slowly than the regular SinemetTM.
Dopamine agonistscan cause nausea even in people who did not experience it with either kind of SinemetTM. Building up your dose very slowly can help, even though you may be impatient to feel the improvement in your Parkinson's symptoms. In Canada and other parts of the world there is a drug called domperidone (MotiliumTM, which is used to prevent the nausea caused by anti-parkinson drugs.
- Dizziness is due to the fact that the drugs can lower your blood pressure. It may occur in the early stages of treatment, but it usually resolves over time. If it does not, consult your doctor, particularly if you are already taking a medication for high blood pressure. .
The following suggestions may help to raise blood pressure without the addition of medications (Non Medical Management of Low Blood Pressure (Orthostatic Hypotension)
Parkinsonâ€™s Disease patients with a combination of postural hypotension and impairment of postural reflexes are candidates for dizziness, fainting and falls leading to fractures. Fractures have serious consequences for the long term health of patients with Parkinsonâ€™s long term health. A safety assessment from a rehabilitation specialist is strongly recommended.Lying and standing blood pressure recordings are essential as diagnostic measures.
These are the triggers that may cause dizziness and fainting:
Prevention strategies include:
If postural hypotension persists despite these measures, a physician may suggest reducing, stopping or replacing drugs known to be lowering your blood pressure. If this isnâ€™t possible the physician may recommend an anti-hypotensive such as fludrocortisone or midodrine, which will artificially raise your blood pressure.
If you have very low blood pressure you may be at risk for recumbent hypertension. This means that your blood pressure may go up too much when you lie down. We recommend that when you are in bed or lying on a couch, your head be 30 degrees higher than your feet. This can be done with lots of pillows or by raising the head of the bed by putting the feet on bricks/blocks or books.