Parkinson's Disease Info for Massage Therapists

Parkinson's Disease Info for Massage Therapists

Parkinson's Disease (PD)

Parkinson's Disease is a type of movement disorder. It happens when nerve cells in the brain do not produce enough dopamine.  PD symptoms begin gradually, often on one side of the body. Later in more advanced disease, it will eventually affect both sides of the body. Symptoms can include: 

  • Trembling of hands, arms, legs, jaw and face
  • Slowness of movement with muscle stiffness plus poor balance/coordination

As symptoms get worse, people with the disease may have trouble walking, talking, or doing simple tasks. They may also have problems such as depression, sleep problems, or trouble chewing, swallowing, or speaking.

Allow extra time to work with someone who has moderate or advanced PD.  While there are few contraindications to work with PD clients, they usually do require extra patience and time.  And as always, ask the client’s physician for any special precautions or considerations for their medical condition.

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