When a person receives a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease, it is frightening for the individual as well as for their loved ones. You want to know how the disease will progress, what treatments are available, how bad it’s going to get, and how long it is going to last.
These are all valid questions, but there are no definitive answers. Vicki Conte, Program Manager for the Department of Neurology at Froedtert and the Medical College of Wisconsin, leads a number of support groups for people with Parkinson’s and their care partners. She says that “no one can predict the direction the disease will take. One person may still be driving 15 years after receiving a diagnosis. Another one may become quite disabled in a much shorter period of time.”