Mr. Parkinson, “We All Fall Down”

5EA2FE752FwalkingIt’s been a while since I’ve talked about Parkinson’s Disease. The good news is I’m on my same basic medication I wrote about in Part 8- Medications… the Road to Levodopa and Part 9- Medications… All in Good Time. Though I know I will probably not decrease the amount of medication I take daily, its good not to have to increase. Continue reading Mr. Parkinson, “We All Fall Down”

Mr. Parkinson Goes to Clinical Trials, Part 2

You have to cry with your own good tears, you have to laugh with your own good cheer.JosephWright-Alchemist   -Toad The Wet Sprocket

Upon my acceptance into the program, I made arrangements and decided on the week I would check in. I am self-employed so it was not hard to schedule the time. They required me there for 7 days, checking in on Sunday and checking out on the following Saturday and told me to fast the night before and not to take my medication as they had to draw blood upon my arrival.

Levodopa is the type of drug that if you don’t take it at scheduled intervals then you feel the lack of it immediately. The term for this medication as to its’ losing its effectiveness is ‘off ‘ as compared to ‘on’ when it is effective. So I was definitely ‘off’ after fasting without coffee or meds. Upon arrival, I was instantly rushed to a chair to sit down. But even in my lethargic state I could tell something was wrong. Continue reading Mr. Parkinson Goes to Clinical Trials, Part 2

Mr. Parkinson Goes to Clinical Trials, Part 1

When I was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease I went online and signed up for newsletters, free publications, and became a member of several major Parkinson’s foundations. As you may have guessed, I have collected tons of information and the one thing all these sites suggested is volunteering for clinical trials. Yet for some reason, I did noMattheus_van_Hellemont_The_Alchemistt think they were talking to me? Maybe that was the ‘denial’ part of me; if you take part then you acknowledge you have Parkinson’s.

One day a friend gave me the phone number from an advertisement, looking for volunteers for a Parkinson’s study. I asked my neurologist about it and with his encouragement I called the number, left my name, and did not think twice about it. After a few months, I received a call from a research facility and they Continue reading Mr. Parkinson Goes to Clinical Trials, Part 1

Mr. Parkinson and the Politics of Pharmaceuticals

3181389420_3835151f67_zIn 2014, I signed up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. I was given a subsidy so my monthly premium was within my budget. During that same year, I started to take the drug Pramipexole, a dopamine agonist which fools the brain into thinking its dopamine. My brain does not make enough of this neurotransmitter resulting in my having Parkinson’s. I take 150 MG a day and at the time I paid about $120 for a 90-day supply through my health insurance. Continue reading Mr. Parkinson and the Politics of Pharmaceuticals