Avoiding Falls in Parkinson's Disease

May 5, 2017

Postural instability is often a problem in Parkinson’s Disease, but not usually in the early stages.  It is extremely important that people with Parkinson’s prevent falls from occurring because injuries often result in greater impairment and sometimes even death. Although we all have suffered falls during our lives, especially as children who are expected to fall when playing, falls in adults are simply not acceptable.

There are several reasons why people with Parkinson’s disease fall:

  1. There is increased stiffness of the muscles of the legs, trunk and arms.

  2. Protective arm movements to “catch oneself” are delayed.

  3. Reactions to environmental stimuli are delayed.

  4. Severe freezing episodes may cause falls

  5. There is an impairment in multi-tasking such as talking and walking at the same time.

  6. Fainting is more common in Parkinson’s disease than those without disease

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