Although there are general guidelines that doctors use to choose a treatment regimen, each person with Parkinson's Disease must be individually evaluated to determine which drug or combination of medications is best for them. For some, a "first choice" drug might be one of the levodopa preparations, and for others, an initial prescription may be given for one of the agonists, an MAO inhibitor or an anticholinergic.

The choice of medication treatment depends on many variables including symptoms present, other existing health issues (and the medications being used to treat them) and age. Dosages vary greatly depending on a person's needs and metobolism.

Since most symptoms of Parkinson's Disease are caused by a lack of dopamine in the brain, many Parkinson's Disease drugs are aimed at either temporarily replenishing dopamine or mimicking the action of dopamine. These types of drugs are called dopaminergic medications. They generally help reduce muscle rigidity, improve speed and coordination of movement and lessen tremor.

Always remember that medication is only part of the overal treatment plan for combatting Parkinson's Disease. Learn more about the available medications, but don't forget exercise and complementary therapies.

Caution:   Parkinson's Medications may have interactions with certain foods, other medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, over-the-counter cold pills and other remedies. Anyone taking a Parkinson's Disease medication should talk to their doctor and pharmacist about potential drug interactions.

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