Parkinson's Disease

This information is useful for adults
Why Yale Medicine?
  • We have the most advanced treatments and clinical trials for Parkinson’s disease.
  • Our doctors are the only ones in the state in the state to perform and manage certain surgical procedures, like Duopa infusion and deep brain stimulation.
  • We have individualized, continually adjusted treatment plans focused on quality of life.

According to the National Parkinson's Foundation, over a million Americans live with Parkinson's disease. There is currently no cure for the disease, but there are medications and other treatments that can help.

While a diagnosis of Parkinson's disease is unquestionably upsetting, it’s important to remember that the disease can often be managed in ways that slow progression and many patients live for decades after an initial diagnosis, says Dr. Elan Louis, Chief of Yale Medicine’s Division of Movement Disorders.

In a patient with Parkinson’s, a cluster of nerve cells in the brain stops working over time. Those cells work to produce dopamine, a chemical that is essential for motor control, balance, and muscle movement.

While the exact cause of this nerve cell depletion is unknown, researchers are studying the possibility of genetic and environmental triggers, such as chemicals, foods, or other products that might lead to nerve cell damage.

Clinical Trials

New treatments for many conditions are tested in clinical trials, which ultimately bring lifesaving new drugs and devices to the patients who need them most. By participating in a clinical trial, you may get access to the most advanced treatments for your condition, and help determine their benefits for future patients.