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Photo credit: BOOO4541 Dopamine cyrstals viewed on polarized l by Spike Walker, Wellcome Images

BOOO4541 Dopamine crystals viewed on polarized light micrograph by Spike Walker, Wellcome Images

Approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease each year. The average age at the time of diagnosis is 60. Of the 60,000 diagnosed, 5-10% are identified as having young onset Parkinson’s disease because they were diagnosed under the age of 50.

Thirty-three Parkinson’s Women Support members were recently polled on their age of diagnosis. The results indicate that they’re on the young side of the national average.

The Parkinson’s Women Support average age of diagnosis is 56.24.
Of the 33 women polled:

  • 6 were under the age of 50 (young onset)
  • 14 were in their 50s
  • 13 were in their 60s

Why is the Parkinson’s Women Support’s average age a little less than the national norm?

Women in Parkinson’s Women Support have great medical resources and wellness opportunities in the San Francisco Bay Area. The convenient location of movement disorder specialists may lead to an earlier diagnosis compared to people with Parkinson’s disease in rural areas of the country where expert diagnosis is more difficult to obtain.

Parkinson’s Women Support is also a group with spirit and courage. They don’t allow average to slow them down!


About Parkinson’s Women Support: The mission of Parkinson’s Women Support is to offer moral support, encouragement and camaraderie for women who are Parkinson’s disease patients. Check out our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/parkinsonswomen

Thank you to Susan Foster for her editing assistance on this blog post.

3 thoughts on “The Age of Diagnosis for 33 Women with PD

  1. Hi Darcy–I love getting your emails!   Thank you.   You have a wonderful support  group !  I follow you on Facebook. I am on the Board of Directors of the Parkinson’s Support Group of Sonoma County,  and five years ago, I began a Womens Support Group which is small but thriving. So I  love support groups. ..I wonder if you know about Summit for Stem Cell “Summit “) out of Scripps in San Diego?   It is a stem cell clinical trial specifically for Parkinson’s disease. I mention it because I became fascinated  with while attending a  public meeting of the CIRM  ( CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF REGENERATIVE MEDICINE ) a little over a year ago.   (The CIRM is a public agency created by the voters to spend millions of taxpayer dollars on stem cell research.   So far, Parkinson’s disease has been allocated  but a small fraction of the pie.  )Summit’s trial is of special nterest because it uses a patient’s own stem cells.  Most neurologists and scientists  believe that use of own stem cells is the most likely route to success with  stem cell treatment because it will avoid rejection.  This is the only clinical trial of its kind in the United States.  Phase one was a complete success.  Summit is privately funded.   There  is no drug company funding.   The researchers at Scripps need to raise 3 million dollars to move on with the clinical trial.  I have been trying in a small way to help them.  They have asked me if I could help organize a large group in  Northern California to look at their presentation.  I frankly do not know where to begin.  I am hoping you may have some ideas and be willing to share them.Thank you in advance .  Naturally, I hope this trial will yield a cure for Parkinson’s.Thank you Suzanne  Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE smartpho)ne

    • Yes, I know about that study. Like you say, the research is remarkable because they are doing it by themselves. Fundraising is a challenge, no matter what the aspect of the cure one is volunteering to help. I don’t have a quick answer for you, but the first thing they’d need to do is organize a presentation in Northern California.

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