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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Parkinson's is a Little Disease

In my bio, I reference Parkinson's as a little disease and even though Parkinson's disease has a HUGE impact on the lives of those affected by it, it is, in many ways a "little" disease. Let me explain. 

Parkinson's disease is caused by the death of little neurons in the little kidney bean sized areas of our brains called the substantia nigra. Neurons are little, very little; it would take hundreds to form the period at the end of this sentence. 
See how little the area is?

With Parkinson's, you tend to get little. Your handwriting gets little, your steps get little, your movements get little and even your voice gets little.

You don't wake up one morning with full-blown Parkinson's disease; it sneaks up on you a little at a time. Michael J. Fox, probably the world's most famous Parkie, noticed that his little finger twitched a little, not a whole bunch, just a little.

Parkinson's makes it difficult to do little things, like button buttons, thread a needle or shave your underarms. 

If you ask the experts, and they give you an honest answer, they will say little is known about Parkinson's. I asked my primary care physician how much he learned about Parkinson's in medical school, and his answer was, "Very little."

Every EMT and paramedic knows the signs of Heart Attack and Stroke, but most know little or nothing about Parkinson's. Heck, even hospitals know so little about Parkinson's that the National Parkinson Foundation created a little Aware in Care kit to educate them.

Holding my Aware in Care kit

When I went for the consultation for DBS surgery, the Doctor said, "We will drill two little holes in your head and insert little leads, which will be connected to a little generator."

When I started writing these little stories, I had no idea they would be read by so many people on this little old planet in the middle of a huge universe. So, I promise not to let this little disease take away my big sense of humor.

Clicking on the colored words will open a new window and take you to a different story or link.


  1. We need to keep that "big sense of humor". Nice share Bev!

  2. Thanks again Bev..Even though my husband is the one with Parknison's you have become MY inspiration. You keep my spirits up and my hope alive !

  3. wonderful BLOG, Thanks so much parkinsons , Its full of entertainment

  4. I love this post Bev! And, I just received an Aware in Care kit too...

  5. Nice blog! I am afraid the Aware in Care kit is only available within the USA... Why not a littlebit more ambition?

  6. Read your observations on how the YOPD makes everything little and it reminded me of this poem. Perhaps you have seen it already.
    Smaller - A Poem about Parkinsons (World Parkinson's Congress) on

  7. love some yumabev! awesome post! you go girl! #truth #hope #laughter

  8. So true, a lot of little things do make up this disease. It's funny how much the little things can change your life, it's also the Little things that you can keep doing like smiling and laughing that keep you going! Stephanie

  9. Yes Bev it's always the littlest of things that can cause the biggest problems.

  10. It's the biggest hurdle those little things. If I need a hand I ask but I try hard before asking, I usually end up laughing because life could be so much worse than the small things I have to tackle. ....

  11. I call it a "smorgasbord" disease, with a vast array of possible symptoms waiting for you, You may get this one & that one, and a bit of another, and someone else will have totally different symptoms, as if they started at the other end of the table. Michael J Fox has called it a "boutique disease - same idea.Good that we can find humor in this; I hope I always can. Leslie

  12. An excellent little summary - but it gave me a big laugh! Take that, Mr Parkinson’s! Seriously, though, that’s the best way to fight back against this horrible little disease - stay positive, be optimistic, exercise regularly, have fun, and laugh in the face of PD, even if it means that you laugh at yourself and some of the daft things you do! Thanks, Bev. Ken

  13. Love your sense of humour!! Keeps me sane when no one else can understand!!

  14. Never a day goes by without a brain fart.
    just keep trying to make my intentions clear!
    Then arthritis this past year how can all these medications expect to have side effects with a Parkie and yes we never know how our future remains certain keep on keeping on new meds keep the fog at bay and it’s seems as if you may be feeling normal interruptions will throw your day off track then back to square one for getting control back into your schedule! Constant reminders from Alexa do a lot of good by using these tools we do may our way and yes baby steps are good.
    From the Bright Parkie