SOC313: Social Implications of Medical Issues
April 8. 2013
Dealing with Parkinson’s disease
There are approximately 1,000,000 people today, living with Parkinson’s. Dealing with Parkinson’s disease can be very life changing for individuals living with the disease and to their family members. Parkinson’s disease affects the central nervous system that leads to progressive deterioration of a person motor function. There is no known cause of the disease; however there have been evidence that suggests that genetics and environmental factors could trigger the onset of the disease. On a PBS Frontline presentation, ‘My Father, My Brother, and Me: Understanding Parkinson’s’, a man named Dave Iverson seeks out to find out more information about the mysteries surrounding the disease. In this PBS presentation I learned that Dave his brother and his father all had contracted the disease. This made me believe that the disease was only hereditary however after I viewed the film I learned a lot more about the disease and I understood about the main concepts of the film. This paper will be centered on the new knowledge that I have gained about the disease based upon the film. In this video there are four main concepts. These concepts are what happens to the brain to cause the disease, what causes the disease, treatment plans for the disease, and whether or not there will be a cure. The first concept is what happens in the brain that causes the disease. There is a part of the brain called the basal ganglia. This part of the brain has a role in controlling muscle movements. What happens is that nerve cells in the basal ganglia begin to die. These nerve cells contain a brain chemical called dopamine to help control muscle movement. Without dopamine, the nerve cells in the basal ganglia cannot properly send messages. This leads to the loss of muscle function which then is identified as Parkinson’s disease....