What is Parkinson’s disease?
Parkinson's disease occurs when certain cells in a part of the brain that helps regulate movement stop functioning correctly. This can cause shaking, stiffness, slow movements, and problems with balance and speaking.
What are other common types of movement disorders?
There are several movement disorders that are common in Australia apart from Parkinson's disease. These include:
What are early signs or symptoms of movement disorders?
- Tremors or shaking
- Slowness of movement
- Stiffness or rigidity in movement
- Changes in balance and coordination
- Changes in the way a person speaks such as slurred speech
- Changes in handwriting
- Loss of smell or changes in taste
- Mood changes, such as depression, anxiety, or apathy
We will conduct a thorough evaluation to ensure an accurate diagnosis. If your doctor suspects Parkinson’s disease or another movement disorder, they may arrange the following to confirm the diagnosis:
- A neurological and physical exam
- Medical imaging (CT scan, MRI scan)
- Lumbar puncture
Treatment and management
If you are seeking treatment for Parkinson's disease or another movement disorder, Epworth offers a variety of effective and specialised treatment options, along with compassionate care and support.
Examples of treatment options include:
- Deep brain stimulation (DBS)
Rehabilitation programs for Parkinson’s disease at Epworth
The Parkinson’s disease rehabilitation program addresses physical, functional and emotional challenges associated with Parkinson’s.
Each program will be tailored to individual needs. An exercise component can help develop strength and restore balance and movement. Other allied health sessions focus on areas, including managing:
- Emotional wellbeing and quality of life
- Nutrition and swallowing
- Energy and fatigue management
With participant consent, we also invite family, friends and/or carers to attend education sessions to provide support and understanding of an individual’s experience living with Parkinson’s.
Epworth Rehabilitation also delivers the Lee Silverman Voice Therapy (LSVT) ® BIG and LOUD programs, which focus on increasing vocal loudness, intelligibility and size of movement in Parkinson’s patients.
Referring to rehabilitation services
For Parkinson’s disease and other movement disorders
Your care team at Epworth
The multidisciplinary team for Parkinson’s disease and other movement disorders includes a specialist neurologist and allied health professionals, such as an occupational therapist and speech pathologist.
Learn more about the health professionals in the neurology care team.