Managing Parkinson’s Disease

A young woman pating an older one whit love and empathy - part of a series.

Parkinson’s disease impacts people in many different ways. Not everyone will experience all of the symptoms of Parkinson’s, and if they do, they won’t necessarily experience them in the same order or with the same level of severity. However, a person diagnosed with this disease who is in the end stages (stages 4-5) can qualify for hospice services. Currently there is no cure for Parkinson’s, but with the support of hospice a person can still live well.

At stage 3 of Parkinson’s, which is considered mid-way in the progression of the disease process, loss of balance, falls, and the slowing of movements are all key factors. Activities of daily living become more difficult as well-bathing, dressing, toileting, etc. When symptoms expand beyond and become sever and limiting (becoming wheelchair or bedbound, requiring 24 hour supervision, or even experiencing hallucinations) hospice can help an individual and their caregiver in many ways.

Those with Parkinson’s who seek professional care have better outcomes and experience an overall better quality of life. Hospice allows a Parkinson’s patient the ability to remain in their own home, surrounded by friends and family as they progress with their illness. The hospice physician, nurse, social worker and other staff members are experts in dealing with end-of-life issues, pain/symptom management, and final processes. Any medical supplies a patient needs including all medications are covered 100% by insurance (Medicare, Medicaid, commercial).

Although hospice is often associated with terminal diseases, such as cancer, it is also an option for those with chronic diseases like Parkinson’s. Determining when the right time to consider hospice can be a difficult decision for patients and families, but having a strong understanding of what hospice can do prepares individuals for what’s ahead. Deciding on hospice may be a tough choice, but it is an important option to explore.

For more information on CompassionCare, hospice, or to request an evaluation-call us today.