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Parkinsons Disease

Researchers discover potential early sign of Parkinson's risk

10 years, 4 months ago

579  0
Posted on Mar 26, 2008, 8 p.m. By Jeanelle Topping

A new study suggests that the onset of Parkinson's disease can be identified by an impaired sense of smell.

A new study suggests that the onset of Parkinson's disease can be identified by an impaired sense of smell.

Although unconfirmed by previous large-scale studies, researchers in Hawaii have found growing evidence that the impaired sense of smell known to occur in the earliest stages of the disease may precede motor symptoms by at least four years.

The authors of the report published in the Annals of Neurology stated: "One interpretation of this finding is that the relationship of olfactory deficits to higher risk of future Parkinson's disease begins to weaken beyond a threshold of approximately four years between testing and diagnosis."

Results of the research, conducted at the Kuakini Medical Center in Honolulu, revealed that those with the poorest odour identification were five times more likely to develop Parkinson's disease than those with the highest sense of smell.

"Olfactory testing along with screening for other potential early indicators of Parkinson's disease such as constipation or sleep disturbances could provide a simple and relatively economic means of identifying individuals at high risk for developing Parkinson's who could participate in trials of medications designed to prevent or slow disease progression," the authors concluded.ADNFCR-1506-ID-18525928-ADNFCR

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