Test for Parkinston's

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

Anna Becker
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2016
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 3/7/2017 1:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Does anyone know if there is a test for Parkinson's? Maybe a spinal tap? I have tremors in my right hand, and just saw a neurologist who first wants to rule out a brain tumor, so I had an MRI on Saturday. He didn't think I have a tumor, but has to rule it out. He thinks it is probably Parkinson's and wants me to come back every 4 months to see if/how it progresses. Not knowing will drive me nuts. He said that there is a test for Parkinson's. I was kind of stunned when in his office, so I didn't think to ask the right questions. Since then I've been searching, but I haven't found that there is a definitive test. Does anyone in this community know? I have a follow up appointment in a couple of weeks, so if not, I hope I can remember to ask him then.
Live a long and healthy life!

lizzy4451
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 422
   Posted 3/12/2017 9:51 AM (GMT -7)   
Anna,
Welcome to HealingWell.

There is no definitive test for Parkinson's. It's a matter of eliminating certain things, then meeting certain criteria. I should preface all this by saying that no two people with Parkinson's are the same. We each have different combination of symptoms. We each respond differently to medications. We each progress at a different rate. I recently heard a neurologist say he thinks Parkinson's is really 20 different diseases - not one.

An MRI eliminates a brain tumor. A CT Scan eliminates stroke. Blood tests eliminate multiple things. An eye exam can eliminate certain things. Once those are eliminated, it's a matter of observation - meeting 4 or more items such as arm swing (do both arms swing equally or does one arm swing less than the other), gait (is your stride/step equal or do you tend to 'drag' one leg/foot), etc. If you display 4+ of the items, then the diagnosis is often Parkinson's.

There is something called a PET scan that can be used when diagnosing PD. It's expensive and not really considered a feasible tool for diagnosis.

Sometimes doctors will have a patient take a PD medication called Sinemet for a few days or weeks.. If the patient responds favorably to Sinemet, it's often an indication of Parkinson's. (Sinemet is the gold standard - works the best. However, there are potential side effects that continue to worsen with time so read up on t0hem before making a decision to take Sinemet long term.)

I hope this helps. Keep us informed of your progress. Best of luck!
lizzy4451

Parkinson's Disease Moderator
Diagnosed with Parkinson's disease 2001. Meds: Requip XL 24mg, Amantadine 200 mg
Life is a dance. Don't sit it out. ---- Jackson H. Brown

Anna Becker
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2016
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 3/16/2017 9:32 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the info. I couldn't find anything about a test either, but since the neurologist said there was one, I was trying to get info about it. Again, thanks for your reply.

lizzy4451
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 422
   Posted 3/21/2017 7:31 AM (GMT -7)   
Anna,
I'm curious to know what your doctor considers to be a 'test' for PD. If you have the opportunity to find out, I'm curious. I suppose some doctors might consider taking SInemet for a few days/weeks to be a 'test' since positive results are often an indicator of PD (although that isn't always true - not everyone with PD reacts favorably to Sinemet and not everyone who doesn't react favorably to Sinemet does not have PD).

Or perhaps your doctor is referring to a PET Scan.

lizzy4451

Parkinson's Disease Moderator
Diagnosed with Parkinson's disease 2001. Meds: Requip XL 24mg, Amantadine 200 mg
Life is a dance. Don't sit it out. ---- Jackson H. Brown

lizzy4451
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 422
   Posted 3/31/2017 6:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Anna,
The following information is from the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF) website:


Why Aren’t There Tests to Diagnose Parkinson’s?
There is no standard diagnostic test for Parkinson’s. Researchers are working to develop an accurate “biological marker,” such as a blood test or an imaging scan. To date, the best objective testing for PD consists of specialized brain scanning techniques that can measure the dopamine system and brain metabolism. But these tests are performed only in specialized imaging centers and can be very expensive.

lizzy4451
Parkinson's Disease Moderator
Diagnosed with Parkinson's disease 2001. Meds: Requip XL 24mg, Amantadine 200 mg
Life is a dance. Don't sit it out. ---- Jackson H. Brown
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Saturday, November 18, 2017 8:24 PM (GMT -7)
There are a total of 2,895,236 posts in 317,778 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 157377 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, internaltremorcure.
328 Guest(s), 6 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Kent M., Pirouette, Michael_T, WalkingbyFaith, Terry's Cellar, Nltonz


About Us | Advertise | Donate
Newsletter | Privacy Policy & Disclaimer
Follow HealingWell.com on Facebook Follow HealingWell.com on Twitter Follow HealingWell.com on Pinterest
©1996-2017 HealingWell.com LLC  All Rights Reserved.