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Diabetes Drug May Be Beneficial for Patients with Parkinson’s Disease

A drug used to treat patients who suffer from diabetes may have the unexpected side effect of helping reduce early symptoms in persons who suffer from Parkinson’s disease.

Researchers at the University College London recently found that the drug exenatide, which the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved in 2005 for the treatment of diabetes, also may benefit persons with Parkinson’s disease. Researchers studied the effects of the drug on diabetic patients as compared to a control group that was on a placebo. They found that the diabetic patients who were on the drug showed better motor function after treatment. Patients on the drug showed reduced signs of decline, compared to those on the placebo.

The study only included a limited number of participants, and the researchers acknowledged that larger group samples may further confirm the findings of the study.

Parkinson’s disease is characterized by symptoms that include muscular stiffness, coordination difficulties, and communication problems. It is a degenerative disorder, meaning that symptoms tend to get progressively worse over time.  Because of the nature of the symptoms, persons who suffer from Parkinson’s disease may find it impossible or very difficult to function effectively in a normal work environment.

There is no cure for Parkinson’s disease, which means that patients must carefully manage their symptoms. However, management may be challenging because of worsening symptoms such as the inability to control hand and leg movements and maintain a safe balance while walking. Parkinson’s disease may also lead to concentration difficulties and challenges associated with social interaction.

If you or a loved one suffers from Parkinson’s disease, discuss filing a claim for disability benefits with an experienced SSDI attorney.