Freddie Roach: Boxing Trainer With Parkinson’s
Frederick “Freddie” Roach is a boxing trainer and former professional boxer. Bryant Gumbel included his story in the HBO series Real Sports, detailing Roach’s efforts to control his Parkinson’s disease with medication and continued work as a trainer. Roach, who began to show Parkinsons symptoms over 20 years ago, trains world-famous boxers at the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, California, which he owns. His client list has included the likes of Amir Khan, Manny Pacquiao, Mark Wahlberg, and Georges St. Pierre.
But having Parkinson’s hasn’t dimmed his commitment to boxing, even as it’s caused his speech to slur and his left arm to shake. “I’m in the gym every day; it’s part of life. Instead of taking a vacation, I like what I do. My vacations are right here,” Roach said in a 2015 CBS interview.
How Alan Alda Copes With Parkinsons Disease
I decided to let people know I have Parkinsons to encourage others to take action. I was Diagnosed 3 and a half years ago, but my life is full. I act, I give talks, I do my podcast, which I love. If you get a diagnosis, keep moving!
It was back in 2018 that Alda announced he was diagnosed with Parkinsons. He admitted that the diagnosis was difficult to cope with, but hes taking action to live his life to the fullest. Alda now accepts the diagnosis and doesnt let the degenerative disease stop him. I decided to let people know I have Parkinsons to encourage others to take action. I was Diagnosed 3 and a half years ago, but my life is full. I act, I give talks, I do my podcast, which I love. If you get a diagnosis, keep moving! he says in a 2018 tweet.
What Causes The Disease
Parkinson’s disease is triggered by a loss of neurons in the the brain. When these brain neurons die, it creates a lack of lack of dopamine in the brain, leading to abnormal brain activity and the disease’s symptoms, according to Mayo Clinic.
It’s unknown what causes the disease. Only 10 to 15 percent of cases have a known link to a single defective gene that can span generations of a family. Other risk factors include age, exposure to toxins and gender ;and men are more likely to be diagnosed than women, according to the Parkinson’s Foundation.
More recent research points to a combination of factors such as genetic risk and environmental factors.
You May Like: Life Expectancy For Parkinson’s
Ozzy Osbourne: Coming To Terms With His Diagnosis
Former Black Sabbath front man Ozzy Osbourne revealed the news of his Parkinsons disease diagnosis in an emotional interview with Robin Roberts on Good Morning America. Accompanied by his wife, Sharon, Osbourne confirmed that hed been diagnosed with Parkinsons in February 2019 following a series of health issues though his case is mild and, as Sharon emphasized, its not a death sentence by any stretch of the imagination.
Im no good with secrets, the rock star confessed. I cannot walk around with it anymore cause its like Im running out of excuses.
The diagnosis coincided with a bad fall and subsequent surgery on his neck, as Osbourne began to experience numbness and chills in one arm and both legs. I dont know if thats the Parkinsons or what, he said. Thats the problem … its a weird feeling. Hes now taking Parkinsons medication along with nerve pills and has planned a trip to see a specialist in Switzerland in April 2020.
I feel better now Ive owned up to the fact that I have a case of Parkinsons, Osbourne said. And I hope hang around, because I need them.
Maurice White: A Performer With Parkinson’s
One of the founding members of the band Earth, Wind & Fire, Maurice White noted the first symptoms of Parkinson’s disease in the 1980s while the band’s popularity was going strong. Although he was diagnosed in 1992 at age 50, he kept quiet about his disease for eight years. In a 2000 interview with Rolling Stone, he discussed his diagnosis, saying, “I traveled with the band for five years with Parkinson’s. I was treating it with medication then, and I still have it under control. It’s not taking anything away from me.”
White died in 2016;at age 74.
Read Also: Does Parkinson’s Run In Families
Alda Went To A Doctor After He Acted Out One Of His Dreams In His Sleep
Six years ago, when Alda was 79, he read a New York Times article by personal health columnist that explained that acting out dreams can be an early sign of Parkinson’s, a disease of the progressive nervous system that causes damage in the brain and impacts movement. It struck a chord with Alda, who remembered recently doing so.
“I had dreamed somebody was attacking me, and in the dream I threw a sack of potatoes at him,”he told AARP in May 2020. “In reality, I threw a pillow at my wife.” This encouraged Alda to go to a neurologist for a brain scan and to not take no for an answer.
” examined me and said, ‘I don’t think you need a scan. You don’t have any symptoms,'” Alda explained to AARP. “I said, ‘Well, I’d really like the scan anyway.’ And he called me back and said, ‘Boy, you really got it.'”
REM sleep behavior disorder, which is the tendency to act out dreams while asleep, is one pre-diagnostic symptom of Parkinson’s. Melissa J. Nirenberg, MD, PhD, Parkinson’s specialist at New York University Medical Center told the NYT that “up to 80 percent of people with the sleep disorder get Parkinson’s or a similar neurodegenerative disease.” The Parkinson’s Foundation notes that trouble sleeping is a common symptom of Parkinson’s, along with tremors, difficulty walking, changes in handwriting, and loss of smell.
Linda Ronstadt: Parkinsons Took Her Voice But Not Her Spirit
Known for her rich soprano vocals as the lead singer of the 1960s band the Stone Poneys, Linda Ronstadt opened up about her Parkinsons disease diagnosis to AARP The Magazine in 2013. After two very bad tick bites in the 1980s, Ronstadt says her health never fully recovered but she didnt visit a neurologist until she was no longer able to sing.
I didnt know why I couldnt sing all I knew was that it was muscular or mechanical. Then when I was diagnosed with Parkinsons, I was finally given the reason. I now understand that no one can sing with Parkinsons disease. No matter how hard you try. And in my case, I cant sing a note, she told AARP.
Don’t Miss: What Brain Structure Is Affected By Parkinson’s
Alda Immediately Began Fighting Back
Alda told AARP that he learned that movement could help prevent the worst symptoms of Parkinson’s from occurring, so he began exercising more right away.
“I move to music a lot,” he said. “I take boxing lessons from a guy trained in Parkinson’s therapy. I do a full workout specifically designed for this disease. It’s not the end of the world when you get this diagnosis.”
The Parkinson’s Foundation says that “exercise and physical activity can improve many PD symptoms.” They specifically recommend biking, running, and pilates.
And for more entertainment and celebrity news sent right to your inbox,
Alan Alda’s Experiment: Helping Scientists Learn To Talk To The Rest Of Us
Alda has continued to act since his diagnosis, and he’s not alone in Hollywood. For example, actor Michael J. Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1991 and has continued to act, including playing a character with Parkinson’s disease on The Michael J. Fox Show. He started The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, which says it has funded more than $800 million in research for a cure.
According to the Parkinson’s Foundation, symptoms include tremors and balance problems. “The cause remains largely unknown,” the foundation said, and “although there is no cure, treatment options vary and include medications and surgery.”
Some 930,000 people in the U.S. are expected to be living with Parkinson’s by 2020, according to a Parkinson’s Foundation study.
You May Like: What To Expect As Parkinson’s Progresses
Alan Will Appear In A Netflix Film
He was diagnosed with Parkinsons in 2014. As we near 2020, the actor is not slowing down. He hosts a podcast regularly called Clear + Vivid and will be in a new movie called . The movie also stars Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver.
Alan admitted that his work projects also keep him young and his co-workers actually call him the worlds oldest millennial. This is because he loves his podcast, computers, and all things social! This year, he got the remaining M*A*S*H stars back together to appear on his podcast.
Fans Call Him An Inspiration To Many For His Strength
I take boxing lessons 3 days a week, play singles tennis twice a week, and take a mild pill all Dr. recommended. I even juggle a little. And Im not entering dementia. Im no more demented than I was before. Maybe I should rephrase that. Really, Im good.
Alda then details exactly what he does to stay active and make the most of life. I take boxing lessons 3 days a week, play singles tennis twice a week, and take a mild pill all Dr. recommended. I even juggle a little. And Im not entering dementia. Im no more demented than I was before. Maybe I should rephrase that. Really, Im good. Sounds like hes using a little humor to cope with it as well!
In response to these tweets, fans came to his side to praise him and wish him well. Youve had polio, youve undergone life-threatening surgery in Chile, and now Parkinsons. Youve always been a fighter and thats what makes you the best grandpa! one fan says. Another writes, What an INCREDIBLY positive and inspiring message, @alanalda. Thank you for sharing this. Were all with you, Hawkeye.
Recommended Reading: How Do Parkinson’s Tremors Start
Alan Alda Wants To Inspire Not To Burden
Alan Alda started a podcast called Clear + Vivid. The point is to explain the difficulties and joys in connecting with people. The point, he explains, is to have open and honest conversations about our similarities and our differences.
The M*A*S*Hstar told CBS that hell continue to do his work and follow doctors orders. And he plans to discuss what hes going through as he hopes it motivates others to get tested. But most of all, he isnt going to worry.
Im not going to worry. While Im trying to say something else, Im not going to be thinking, is my thumb on a life of its own. You know, thats just one of the realities of my life. But Ive acted in movies since its three-and-a-half years since I had the diagnosis and it hasnt stopped my life at all. Ive had a richer life than Ive had up until now.
Bob Hoskins: Retirement With Parkinson’s
A British actor best known for his award-winning turn in the 1982 film The Long Good Friday and for his voiceover in 1988’s Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Bob Hoskins announced that having Parkinson’s disease forced him into retirement in 2012. He was quite private about the details of his diagnosis, but in a 2012 interview with Saga Magazine, he said, “I’m trying to retire. I’m not doing very well at it, though.” When he did retire, he announced that he would be focusing on living a healthier lifestyle after leaving the acting profession.
Hoskins died in April 2014 at age 71.
Also Check: Are Intention Tremors Common In Parkinson’s
Freddie Roach: Boxing Trainer With Parkinsons
Frederick Freddie Roach is a boxing trainer and former professional boxer. Bryant Gumbel included his story in the HBO series Real Sports, detailing Roachs efforts to control his Parkinsons disease with medication and continued work as a trainer. Roach, who began to show Parkinsons symptoms over 20 years ago, trains world-famous boxers at the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, California, which he owns. His client list has included the likes of Amir Khan, Manny Pacquiao, Mark Wahlberg, and Georges St. Pierre.
But having Parkinsons hasnt dimmed his commitment to boxing, even as its caused his speech to slur and his left arm to shake. Im in the gym every day; its part of life. Instead of taking a vacation, I like what I do. My vacations are right here, Roach said in a 2015 CBS interview.
Former M*a*s*h Star Alan Alda Explains How Hes Coping With Parkinsons Diagnosis
The former M*A*S*H star recently appeared on the Today show where he gave fans an update about his battle with the disease.
Im good, said the 83-year-old. I shake a little, but Im good.
The actor said he regularly exercises to help him feel like a kid, as well as hold back the progression of Parkinsons.
I work out, he explained. You can hold back the progress if you do a lot of specific exercises. So I do a lot of crazy things.
Alda said he relies on boxing, juggling, tennis, swimming, bicycle riding and even marching to keep him active.
I march to Sousa music, he chuckled. A lot of Sousa music going on all the time my house.
In July 2018, the Hawkeye Pierce icon appeared on CBS This Morning;and announced he was diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disorder in 2014. ;But since that revelation, Alda said hes feeling good.
I work so hard, he continued. But I guess thats part of it. I feel like a kid because Im working so far.
Alda even quipped that those who work with him call him the worlds oldest millennial.
Also Check: What Is On Off Phenomenon In Parkinson’s Disease
The Importance Of Catching Parkinson’s Early
Approximately 1 million people in the United States have Parkinson’s. While most people can recognize the telltale signs of later stages of the disease, such as tremors and a shuffling walk, earlier signs can be much more difficult to pinpoint.
Catching the disease in its early stages can be beneficial for a number of reasons, says Dr. Claire Henchcliffe, director of the Parkinson’s Disease & Movement Disorders Institute at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian.
“There are modifiable lifestyle factors that could make a difference, for example exercising and diet while these are not proven to delay onset of Parkinson’s there is considerable optimism about their role,” she told CBS News. “Making the diagnosis also means if that person wants to get involved in clinical studies then they can make a real contribution to developing better understanding of and treatments for Parkinson’s.”
What Are Some Treatments
Although the disease is incurable, people can live for decades and effectively manage symptoms with drug treatments, according to doctors who treat the disease.;
There are a range of drugs, medical devices and other treatments such as exercise used to treat the disease. A commonly prescribed drug is levodopa, which helps synthesize dopamine in the brain. It is often paired with another drug, carbidopa, to reduce nausea.
Another class of drug, known as dopamine agonists, mimics the effects of dopamine rather than replacing the drug in the brain, according to Mayo Clinic.;
Drugs can effectively control movement for Parkinson’s patients for years, and the bigger challenge is often taking care of nonmovement issues such as depression or sleep disruption,;said Michael Okun, a University of Florida neurologist.
“The nonmotor features of Parkinson’s disease are much more disabling than the motor features,” said Okun, who also serves as medical director of Parkinson’s Foundation, an advocacy group. “With treatments, patients with Parkinson’s disease can do very well and live good, meaningful and happy lives.”
Also Check: How Does A Person Die From Parkinson’s
Alan Aldas Experiment: Helping Scientists Learn To Talk To The Rest Of Us
Alda has continued to act since his diagnosis, and hes not alone in Hollywood. For example, actor Michael J. Fox was diagnosed with Parkinsons disease in 1991 and has continued to act, including playing a character with Parkinsons disease on The Michael J. Fox Show. He started The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinsons Research, which says it has funded more than $800 million in research for a cure.
According to the Parkinsons Foundation, symptoms include tremors and balance problems. The cause remains largely unknown, the foundation said, and although there is no cure, treatment options vary and include medications and surgery.
Some 930,000 people in the U.S. are expected to be living with Parkinsons by 2020, according to a Parkinsons Foundation study.
Alan Alda Reveals He Has Parkinson’s Disease: I’m Not Angry
Alan Alda has Parkinson’s disease. In an appearance on “CBS This Morning” Tuesday, the award-winning actor, best known for his relatable portrayal of Army Capt. “Hawkeye” Pierce in the TV series “M*A*S*H,” revealed he was diagnosed three-and-a-half years ago.
“I’ve had a full life since then,” he said. “I’ve acted, I’ve given talks, I help at the Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook. I started this new podcast. And I noticed that I had been on television a lot in the last couple of weeks talking about the new podcast and I could see my thumb twitch in some shots and I thought, it’s probably only a matter of time before somebody does a story about this from a sad point of view, but that’s not where I am.”
Alda said he got tested for the disease after reading an article about how one of the early signs of Parkinson’s is acting out dreams.;
“I was having a dream that someone was attacking me and I threw a sack of potatoes at them. But what I was really doing was throwing a pillow at my wife,” he said.
The 82-year-old recently launched a podcast called Clear+Vivid, which explores all the ways in which people communicate with each other. The ability to engage with people clearly, he says, is the key to greater understanding for everyone. Another reason Alda spoke out was to send a message of hope to those who might be facing the disease.
Also Check: How Does A Person With Parkinson’s Feel