Do Abdominal Massage Therapy
Abdominal massage is becoming a very popular treatment option for people with constipation. It helps to activate normal motion of your bowels and relieve the symptoms of constipation.
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Nursing found abdominal massage an effective treatment approach for constipation. In this study, nine adults with constipation were participated in abdominal massage sessions. The participants found the massage pleasant and began to feel embraced and in safe hands. They described that not only their bowel habits were improved but also their agony was gone and they felt relieved.
Parkinsons patients are recommended to do abdominal massage therapy at least once a day, either yourself or with the help of your healthcare provider.
Whats Next For Those Suffering From Urinary Incontinence
I decided I did not want to add another medication to the medicine bag. I was trying to see if there was something I could do besides resigning myself to wearing pads or some other incontinence protection all the time. At 53 years old, I wanted to see if there was a way I could help myself.
Part 2 of this article will address my experiences. I plan to discuss what I lovingly refer to as PEE PEE PT physical therapy to help treat urinary incontinence.
Recommended Reading: What Toxins Can Cause Parkinsons Disease
Can Doctors Miss The Early Signs Of Parkinsons Disease
Yes, doctors are human.
There has been a tremendous increase in human knowledge over recent years. It is not possible for a single person to recognize all the symptoms of all the diseases.
Thus, when a patient only has the early symptoms of Parkinsons disease, the diagnosis of Parkinsons disease is often missed.
As noted above, the early symptoms of Parkinsons disease can be vague.
Even if you have some of these symptoms, your diagnosis needs to be confirmed by a physical examination. This examination detects the early signs of Parkinsons disease.
Sometimes when the doctor examines you, everything might be perfectly normal. This may be due to one of two things:
The last thing to make sure is that you dont have a disease that can mimic Parkinsons disease. This can lead to misdiagnosis.
If the doctor is not sure, a test called Trodat/F-Dopa scan may help with diagnosis
Urinary Problems In Parkinsons Disease
Parkinsons disease has many features that have little or nothing to do with movement. Among these non-motor symptoms are problems with the autonomic nervous system the part of the nervous system that controls automatic bodily functions, such as heart rate, blood pressure, sweating, sexual function and both gastrointestinal and urinary function. These symptoms are often among the most serious and complex issues faced by people with PD.
Unlike bowel dysfunction , which often occurs before Parkinsons movement symptoms, urinary dysfunction is not typically a problem until the later stages of the disease.
Recommended Reading: Is Parkinsons Disease A Mutation
Neurologic Disease Or Injury
The main functions of the colon and anorectum are to mix and absorb water from ingested material, to store fecal wastes, and to eliminate them voluntarily at a suitable time. A wide variety of neurologic diseases can affect colonic and anorectal function and are associated with constipation and or fecal incontinence. Examples include:
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Spinal Cord Injury
- Parkinsons Disease
Neurological diseases can affect nerve pathways to the large intestine. They can also affect the nerve network within the bowel wall that regulates intestinal smooth muscle, a type of muscle that functions automatically without direct voluntary control. This article summarizes what is known about these conditions and how best to manage constipation and incontinence associated with these disorders.
Don’t Miss: What Color Represents Parkinson’s Disease
Dietary Recommendations For Seniors With Parkinsons
Constipation is common among aging adults with Parkinsons because of issues with the bowel muscles associated with digestion. Eating high-fiber foods can help older adults naturally address constipation and promote healthy digestion. Oatmeal is a great source of dietary fiber, and its also rich in protein, which can boost muscle strength and offset Parkinsons-related mobility issues. Bananas, split peas, lentils, sweet potatoes, and chickpeas are also great sources of dietary fiber.
Aging adults with Parkinsons have an increased risk of developing cardiovascular issues, so eating heart-healthy foods is essential. In addition to limiting the consumption of foods high in fat and cholesterol, seniors with Parkinsons should add fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna, and mackerel, to their diets because they offer added protection against heart disease. These varieties of fish also contain high amounts of vitamin D and beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, which offer a variety of brain-boosting benefits for seniors with Parkinsons.;
Drinking plenty of water is essential for proper digestive function, and its one of the best ways for seniors with Parkinsons to address constipation. Regularly drinking water is also beneficial for aging adults living with Parkinsons disease because it boosts circulation, which is critical to delivering nutrients to the brain as well as the various joints and soft tissues involved in movement.;
Gastrointestinal Issues In Advanced Parkinsons Disease
Problems with motility of the gut can be a major source of difficulty throughout the disease course and can be particularly problematic in advanced PD as well. . Constipation, which can be one of the earliest symptoms of PD is a very common problem throughout the disease course. Two gut issues that tend to be particularly problematic in people with advanced PD are abdominal pain and fecal incontinence.
Study Reveals Ibs Risk
BERLIN — Irritable bowel syndrome may be a more frequent symptom in Parkinson’s disease than constipation, researchers reported here.
In a case-control study, about a quarter of Parkinson’s patients had IBS compared with only 5% of healthy controls , according to Tuomas Mertsalmi, MD, of the University of Helsinki, and colleagues.
On the other hand, the prevalence of constipation was higher among Parkinson’s patients, but the difference from healthy controls wasn’t significant, they reported at the Movement Disorders Society meeting here.
“Gastrointestinal symptoms in Parkinson’s disease are more complex than just constipation,” Mertsalmi told MedPage Today. “Usually constipation is just seen as decrease bowel frequency, but it is also about straining during defecation, hard and lumpy stools, and diarrhea in these patients.”
Previous work has shown that the majority of patients with Parkinson’s suffer from gastrointestinal symptoms. About 70% have been estimated to have constipation, which is considered to be a premotor symptom of the disease and is one of the strongest risk factors for Parkinson’s, Mertsalmi said.
IBS is among the most common functional gastrointestinal disorders, and is characterized by symptoms of abdominal pain or discomfort, and alteration of bowel habits.
All patient with a pre-existing diagnosis of IBS were excluded, he added.
Bladder Incontinence In Women
Bladder incontinence is more common in women than in men. Other than the possible causes listed above, some things that may increase risk of bladder incontinence in women are:
- Changes to urinary or vaginal tissue from hormone therapy, surgery, chemotherapy, or targeted therapy
- Hormonal changes from menopause
- Pelvic prolapse the bladder, uterus, and or rectum may slip backward or downward into the vaginal canal because of weak pelvic wall muscles
Recommended Reading: What Color Is The Ribbon For Parkinson’s
Constipation As A Symptom Of Parkinsons Disease
The medical world, as of today, still questions the cure and the cause of having Parkinsons disease . However, several treatments, surgeries, and therapies are present to aid PD patients.;Earlier studies have proved that the said illness occurs due to the nerve cells dying in the brain, mainly in the area of the brain called the substantia nigra. With the neurons dying, the brain produces dopamine. It is a chemical responsible for sending signals to the brain that controls movement and coordination. As the dopamine levels continue to decrease, it would cause an individual to lose the control of his/her movements.
Symptoms vary from one person to another and they may experience a tremor of the hands, legs, and face. Moreover, the slowness of movement , the stiffness of the limbs, or impaired balance and coordination are also possible symptoms. However, over the past decade, studies show that dopamine is also present in other parts of the body including the non-motor parts. This notion is due to the discovery that the Lewy Bodies are present in the brainstem and olfactory bulb. This indicates that the said disease may affect a persons sense of smell and sleep regulation.
Have a question about
In addition to this, the intestines have also been discovered to have dopamine. This means that gastrointestinal problems may be a sign of having Parkinsons disease, which includes bowel movement.
Stay Away From Red Meat
Parkinsons patients are recommended to stay away from red meat while constipated. This is because red meat contains proteins and unhealthy fats that are difficult for the body to digest quickly. Red meat is also rich in iron, which is hard on the digestive tract and so can easily contribute to the constipation problem.
Don’t Miss: How To Use Hemp Oil For Parkinson’s
Bladder And Bowel Problems
Bladder and bowel problems are common in men and women of all ages, but people with Parkinsons;are more likely to have these problems than people who;dont have the condition.;
If you have Parkinson’s, you may be more likely to have problems with your bladder or bowels than people of a similar age without the condition.
Some of these problems are common in men and women of all ages, whether they have Parkinson’s or not.
Bowel problems are very common in the general public. But any change in bowel habit, particularly if you see blood in your bowel motions, should be reported to your GP.
Whatever the reason for your bladder and bowel problems, you can usually do something to help. It may be that the problem can be cured completely. But if that isnt possible, there are many different ways of managing the symptoms so they dont rule your life.
The Gastrointestinal Tract And Parkinsons
As promised in a previous blog, I now return to the topic of the gastrointestinal tract and Parkinsons disease . As most of you know, GI symptoms are very common in PD. We will discuss what those symptoms are, why they occur, and the current research that links what is happening in the gut to theories as to why PD occurs at all. Many of you have suggested gut-related topics for this blog including a discussion of symptoms such as bloating and constipation, and a discussion of the use of probiotics in PD. I will address these issues as well. Submit additional topics that you would like to read about here.
GI symptoms can be among the most bothersome of the non-motor symptoms of PD. Constipation is the most common of these symptoms, affecting 80-90% of people with PD. APDA has a helpful brochure with practical tips to prevent and treat constipation in PD.
GI pathology in Parkinsons disease however, can involve the entire GI tract and includes sialorrhea and dysphagia . In addition, delayed gastric emptying, in which the digestive contents are held up in the stomach and do not move normally into the small intestine, can cause sensations of nausea and bloating.
The gut has its own nervous system
The gut as a biomarker
Entry to the brain
How do Lewy bodies propagate?
Recommended Reading: What Is The Life Expectancy Of Someone With Parkinson’s Disease
Parkinsons Disease And The Gut
Parkinsons disease is primarily a neurological condition; however, symptoms also manifest outside of the brain itself, including within the gut . This article aims to provide a simple background to Parkinsons disease, and some insights into how these GI symptoms may arise and how we can treat them. Increased awareness of these often-overlooked GI issues in Parkinsons might lead to better understanding of the condition by researchers, as well as improved treatment and quality of life for patients.
What Can Be Done About These Unpleasant Gi Problems
Unfortunately, research studies on GI problems related to PD have been few and far between, so doctors do not have any tried and true methods to deal with them. Some of the drugs to treat GI problems in people without PD cannot be used for those with PD because these drugs negatively impact dopamine systems in the brain.
If you have PD and experience constipation, it makes sense to try to use safe and simple methods to address this issue before you add new drugs to your daily regimen. Increasing dietary fiber and drinking lots of water and other fluids is a reasonable first step in treatment. If your doctor approves it, you might also consider taking fiber supplements, such as psyllium or methylcellulose. If these simple methods dont work, your doctor might consider giving you a stool softener or a laxative.
Read Also: Can Parkinson’s Run In The Family
Urinary Difficulties In Parkinsons Disease
The most common urinary difficulty experienced by people with PD is a frequent and urgent need to urinate. Urinary incontinence, the involuntary loss of urine, is also a symptom of PD. This may occur even when the bladder is not full. Recent research studies estimate approximately 27-39% of people with PD experience urinary difficulties, although urinary incontinence only develops in about 15% of those with PD. Bladder issues usually develop in the later stages of PD.2
There are several medications that can help manage urinary difficulties, such as tolterodine, oxybutynin, darifenacin, and solifenacin. These medications work to block or reduce overactivity in the bladder. However, these medications may make the symptoms of PD worse. It is recommended to discuss these treatments with a movement disorders specialist who has been trained to understand the effects of various medications on the disease.2
Scientists Say This Common Non
If you suffer from constipation, it might be a sign of early Parkinsons disease.
Researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany, have hypothesized that constipation a common although not usually discussed non-motor symptom of Parkinsons could predate diagnosis of the neurological disease by up to 20 years.
Thats important because there are currently no therapies capable of stopping the progression of the Parkinsons. However, if it is diagnosed early enough, scientists hope that certain therapies that have proved unsuccessful later on in the disease might work to at earlier stages.
Parkinsons involves the buildup of tiny deposits of protein waste within brain cells called Lewy bodies . Lewy body buildup appears to be linked with specific non-motor symptoms of Parkinsons including anxiety, sleep disorders and the loss of the sense of smell.
Scientists have proposed that Lewy bodies kill some of the brain cells that control the healthy functioning of different parts of the body, including the gastrointestinal tract.
Because Lewy bodies are clinically inaccessible and cant be studied directly in the brain, scientists have had to look for related symptoms like constipation. Lewy bodies may lurk in the brain for many years before diagnosis.
While the research is still hypothetical for humans, Goldberg is enthusiastic.
The results were published last week in the journal Science Advances.
You May Like: Is Parkinson’s Disease Fatal
Constipation Can Appear Differently From Person To Person
The normal amount of time someone experiences in-between bowel movements“varies widely from person to person,” according to WebMD. Some people have them up to three times a day, while others only have a few bowel movements each week. With that in mind, constipation will appear differently to different people, as it simply means that your bowel movements are happening less often than what is normal for your body.
In general, WebMD says three or more days without a movement is usually too long, because this makes stool harder and more difficult to pass, which results in constipation. You may also experience symptoms such as straining, hard or small stools, a sense that everything didn’t come out, or belly bloating when you have constipation.
A New Toilet Or An Alternative
If you have real difficulties getting to the toilet, it may be possible to get a grant to build a new one, perhaps downstairs. An occupational therapist can advise you on this.
Not all homes are suitable for building new toilets, so a commode might be needed. A commode is a moveable toilet that doesnt use running water. It looks like a chair, with a container underneath that can be removed and cleaned after someone has used it. They can be very discreet.
Final Thoughts: What Has Worked For Me
Some of the prescription medications that have helped me include: Amitiza, Linzess, Movantik, Relistor, Symproic, and Trulance. Plus I made sure to exercise, massage my stomach in a circular motion at least once a day, drink warm/hot water in the morning before eating, and use probiotics. I also tried to do things that helped make me feel more relaxed. In my experience, a combination of these things is what truly helps maintain a healthy bowel, which results in better PD symptom control by allowing medication to be maximally absorbed.
Contact Our Information And Referral Helpline
The Parkinson Canada Information and Referral Helpline is a toll-free Canada-wide number for people living with Parkinsons, their caregivers and health care professionals. We provide free and confidential non-medical information and referral services. When you have questions or need assistance, our information and referral staff help connect you with resources and community programs and services that can help you. We provide help by phone or email, Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m. ET.
Read Also: Does Parkinson’s Make You Tired