ATLANTA, April 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- To help people learn more about the full range of symptoms associated with Parkinson's disease, global biopharmaceutical company UCB, Inc., is launching a new online community -- Parkinson's More than Motion(TM) -- that provides a platform for people living with Parkinson's disease and their caregivers to interact and learn from others with the condition. Part of this launch is the debut of a new reality-style video series depicting real families living with the condition.
"My family and I are telling my story in the More than Motion(TM) community to encourage others to educate themselves about all symptoms of Parkinson's disease, so they can best manage the condition," said Jo-Ann Golec, who was diagnosed more than 15 years ago and has become an active Parkinson's disease advocate.
The Parkinson's More than Motion(TM) community includes a Facebook page where people can add their voices to the conversation, connect with experts, take quizzes and more:
-- Watch the reality-style video series featuring Parkinson's disease patients and their families. -- In the first installment, viewers will meet Jo-Ann and her family and find out why she is committed to exercise, how she prepares for meetings with her movement disorder specialist, and her involvement with the Parkinson's disease community in her hometown. -- Sign up for More than Motion(TM) magazine, a free publication featuring helpful resources and stories from real people.
One million Americans currently live with Parkinson's disease. Symptoms of Parkinson's disease are typically categorized as either affecting motor function or non-motor function. The cardinal motor symptoms include stiffness, tremors, slow movements and postural instability. In addition, the medical and research communities are starting to better understand the full spectrum of symptoms that can have a significant impact on a patient's life. These include:
-- Cognitive changes, such as memory problems or trouble paying attention -- Depression, anxiety, irritability, decreased motivation or apathy -- Sleep disorders, ranging from insomnia to drowsiness -- Skin disorders, such as rashes or dandruff -- Gastrointestinal or urinary disorders
In celebration of Parkinson's Awareness Month, which occurs each April in the U.S., Parkinson's More than Motion(TM) will travel to community events this month including the American Academy of Neurology's Brain Health Fair in New Orleans and the Parkinson's Unity Walk in New York City.
To learn more about Parkinson's More than Motion(TM) and to view the first installment of the video series, visit Facebook.com/ParkinsonsMorethanMotion.
More About Parkinson's Disease
Parkinson's disease is a chronic, progressive, neurological disease that occurs when certain cells in the brain stop producing enough of a chemical called dopamine. Dopamine plays several important roles in the body -- it helps regulate movement and it plays a role in cognitive and emotional function.
As dopamine levels fall, the cardinal motor symptoms (stiffness, tremors, slow movement, and postural instability) can progress, along with the underlying non-motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease, which are less well-recognized and may be under-treated. It is estimated that 60 percent of people with Parkinson's have two or more non-motor symptoms, and that 25 percent have four or more.
Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurological disorder affecting older people in the United States. Each year, between 50,000 and 60,000 new cases of Parkinson's disease are diagnosed in the U.S.; worldwide it is estimated that 7 to 10 million people have Parkinson's disease.
Most people are diagnosed with the condition when they are in their sixties; one in every 100 people age 60 and older is affected by the condition.
UCB, Brussels, Belgium (www.ucb.com) is a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative medicines and solutions to transform the lives of people living with severe diseases of the immune system or of the central nervous system. With more than 8,500 people in about 40 countries, the company generated revenue of EUR 3.2 billion in 2011. UCB is listed on Euronext Brussels (symbol: UCB).
Andrea Levin, Associate Director, Communications & PR, UCB, Inc.
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