Parkinson’s Disease: A Guide for Patients and Families by William Weiner MD, Lisa Shulman MD, and Anthony Lang MD

A good source of information with a surprisingly optimistic outlook on a really terrible neurological disorder. There is still no cure, but there are drug treatments that can alleviate the symptoms. I hate to dwell on such an irrelevant detail, but there was significant commentary on the effects of Parkinson’s on the patient’s sex life. Well, hello, I have no sex life and have never had a sex life; am I supposed to regard that as a medical problem and seek treatment for it? Silliness aside, there was a lot of interesting stuff about the brain and the nervous system, and contrary to what is popularly believed, there is NO evidence at all that stem cells have any therapeutic effect. There was a long and detailed evaluation of the effectiveness of various drug treatments and surgical treatments; this was probably the most useful information in the book. The causes of the disease remain unknown. I wouldn’t say this book prepared me for med school, but it did educate me considerably.

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