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Welcome to Our Parkinson's Place
I copy news articles pertaining to research, news and information for Parkinson's disease, Dementia, the Brain, Depression and Parkinson's with Dystonia. I also post about Fundraising for Parkinson's disease and events. I try to be up-to-date as possible. I have Parkinson's diseases as well and thought it would be nice to have a place where updated news is in one place. That is why I began this blog.
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Saturday, December 19, 2015
Cells in the Brain Are Damaged
For reasons not well understood, brain cells located in a structure called the substantia nigra die or become impaired in those with Parkinson’s disease. These cells produce a neurotransmitter called dopamine, which helps to carry electrical signals from your brain to the areas of the body you wish to move. (This process allows you to carry out smooth and coordinated movements.) According to the National Parkinson’s Foundation, Parkinson’s Disease occurs when at least eighty percent of these cells that produce dopamine are affected.
Mild Changes Occur
As the body begins to have trouble coordinating movement and muscle contractions, minor changes become apparent. Your handwriting may become small and cramped. You may begin to speak softly and have difficulty projecting your voice loud enough so others can hear you. Your facial muscles may lose tone; others often notice this as a lack of facial expression when they are speaking to you. You may also begin to have trouble chewing and swallowing. Learning to recognize these early warning signs is important. Medications, exercise and surgery can all help to control your symptoms and, in some cases, slow the progression of this disease.
Movement Is Affected
As the disease progresses and less dopamine is available, more apparent movement changes will occur. Your movements may become slower and you may find that you have difficulty initiating movement at all. This is often referred to as “freezing.” For example you may want to lift your arm but since dopamine is not available to carry the electrical signal your arm muscles, you will be unable to move your arm until there is enough dopamine present. The same is true when attempting to step out to walk; you may notice a tendency to shuffle your feet and take small quick steps just to keep going. Since movements are uncontrolled some Parkinson’s patients will develop a tremor or shaking movement in the arms, face or legs.
The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation states that as the muscles lose tone, you may develop a tightness or stiffness especially in the trunk and hips. As the stiffness worsens, movement becomes harder and slower. This can make it difficult to twist and turn. Daily activities such as getting dressed, eating and bathing may take longer or you may need assistance. As the muscles tighten, your posture may become halted altogether and maintaining balance will be more challenging.
Cognitive Ability May Change
The Michael J. Fox Foundation notes that as further damage occurs in the brain, some patients with Parkinson’s disease develop “cognitive problems, such as short-term memory loss, difficulty following complex instructions or a loss of multitasking ability.” However they also state that the rate and severity of progression is very different for each patient.
By Lori Newell
December 18, 2015
Using a portable device, researchers have identified differences in brain activation patterns associated with postural stability in people with Parkinsonian syndromes and healthy adults. The findings describe the critical role of the prefrontal cortex in balance control and may have implications with respect to detecting and treating Parkinsonian symptoms in the elderly.
Friday, December 18, 2015
By Patricia Kime, Staff writer
The Veterans Affairs Department has determined that eight medical conditions are linked to service at Camp Lejeune, N.C. from 1953 to 1987, and veterans with these diseases who were stationed at the sprawling Marine Corps base are eligible for disability compensation.
VA officials said Thursday that these eight diseases that have been determined to be service-connected to consuming contaminated drinking water at the base: kidney cancer, liver cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, leukemia, multiple myeloma, scleroderma, Parkinson's disease and aplastic anemia or other myelodysplastic syndromes.
VA Secretary Robert McDonald said research by health experts at the Veterans Health Administration and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, an arm of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, indicated that the risk of developing these illnesses is elevated by exposure to contaminants found in the water, including perchloroethylene, trichlorotheylene, benzene and other volatile organic compounds.
"The water at Camp Lejeune was a hidden hazard, and it is only years later that we know how dangerous it was," McDonald said. "We thank ATSDR for the thorough review that provided much of the evidence we needed to fully compensate veterans who develop one of the conditions known to be related to exposure to the compounds in the drinking water."
Nearly a million people, including troops, family members and civilian employees working at Camp Lejeune from the 1950s through the 1980s were exposed to these chemicals and other cancer-causing agents in the base's drinking water, supplied by two water treatment facilities polluted by dry cleaning compounds, leaking underground storage tanks, industrial spills and poor disposal practices.
The VA has provided health care or reimbursement for medical costs for veterans who served at Camp Lejeune at least 30 days during the affected period or family members with 15 illnesses related to exposure to water contaminated by solvents and fuels, but it had not awarded "presumptive status" to any condition until now.
The changes will take effect after VA publishes regulations regarding these presumptions, and will apply to new disability claims. Veterans who have previously been denied on such claims may seek to be re-evaluated. Also, any pending claims that might be denied under current regulations will be placed on hold until the VA issues its final rules, according to a department press release.
The bedrock eligibility rules will be that veterans must have one of the eight specified conditions and must have served at Camp Lejeune between Aug. 1, 1953, and Dec. 31, 1987.
The new rules also will expand eligibility to reserve and National Guard members who served at Camp Lejeune for any length of time during that period.
A VA spokeswoman said compensation awarded as a result of the proposed regulations, if adopted, will "be effective no earlier than the date the final rule is published."
Veterans have expressed frustration over the low rate of claims approvals for illnesses related to the Camp Lejeune water. Hundreds of veterans attended a meeting of the Camp Lejeune Community Assistance Panel on Dec. 5 in Tampa to express frustration with the VA's handling of claims and plead with VA officials to improve the process.
Paul Maslow, a veteran who walks with a cane and said he has inoperable tumors on his spine and elsewhere, said he and thousands of former troops need assistance.
"You are not helping us, you are hurting us," Maslow told VA officials attending the meeting. "And the more you delay, the more of us ... are going to die."
Two senators who pressed VA to change its policies regarding benefits for Camp Lejeune veterans said Thursday they applaud the VA's decision, calling it a "victory for those who have suffered."
"The VA has conceded that it will no longer deny disability benefits to Camp Lejeune victims based on ridiculous scientific claims,” Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., said.
"VA is finally granting some justice to veterans who were exposed to contaminated drinking water while assigned to Camp Lejeune,” said Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C. "The victims of this tragedy have waited far too long to receive disability benefits."
Read more : https://www.vetshq.com/camp-lejeune-toxic-water/
Read more : https://www.vetshq.com/camp-lejeune-toxic-water/
The Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in eastern North Carolina supports Marine Corps commands, a Navy command and a Coast Guard command …. And it hosts the largest concentration of Marines and sailors in the world as the HOME OF EXPEDITIONARY FORCES IN READINESS.
But for 30 years in their own backyard Camp Lejeune military and their family members faced an unseen enemy.
If you served or lived at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987 including in these base housing areas —Tarawa Terrace, Midway Park, Berkeley Manor, Paradise Point, Hadnot Point, Hospital Point, Watkins Village — you were exposed to bath water and drinking water containing more than 70 chemical contaminants including degreasers, dry cleaning solvents and flammable liquids at concentrations 240 to 3,400 times permitted safety standards.
In fact the government shut down the contaminated water supply in the mid-1980s — then the government turned the water back on in violation of the law and once again EXPOSING Marines and their families to the toxic water.
This toxic contamination of groundwater is responsible for these diseases and conditions: bladder cancer , breast cancer, esophageal cancer, female infertility, hepatic steatosis, kidney cancer, leukemia, lung cancer, miscarriage, multiple myeloma, myelodysplastic syndromes, neurobehavioral effects, Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, renal toxicity, and scleroderma.
But there is some assistance available for veterans and their families.
Want to know more? Click on the graphic.
DID YOU KNOW that Congress passed a law providing for medical care benefits and reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses if you were at Camp Lejeune during that time?
DID YOU KNOW the Supreme Court heard ruled in a 7-2 decision on June 9, 2014, that a group of homeowners in North Carolina cannot suit a company that contaminated their drinking water decades earlier because the state deadline of 10 years had passed before they filed suit against the company — nevermind that these homeowners were unaware of the circumstances surrounding the toxic water until after the deadline had passed. . . . The ruling was a clear setback for Camp Lejeune Marines and their families and likely meant that none of the affected individuals would be able to recover damages because the government relied on the same North Carolina law to avoid liability, until ….
DID YOU KNOW that North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory signed into law a bill that clarified the intent of the state’s original “statute of repose,” saying it was only intended to cover product liability lawsuits and not the type of damage claim Camp Lejeune Marines and their families would be seeking. This law revives the possibility that victims can sue the company and the government for damages caused by the groundwater contamination.
DID YOU KNOW that the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that time has run out for Camp Lejeune victims and families to file lawsuits seeking damages or other remedies because of North Carolina’s “statute of repose”, a 10-year limit on lawsuits for liability. The appeals court found that the clarification passed unanimously by the state legislature and signed by Gov. Pat McCrory after the Supreme Court ruling could only apply to future claims.
DID YOU KNOW that finally — two years after Congress passed the Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act — the VA announced it would begin to cover out-of-pocket costs for dependents of Marines affected by the Camp Lejeune water contamination. The VA will reimburse family members back to March 25, 2013 if they have been diagnosed with one of 15 contaminant-related illnesses. That date was when Congress began providing funding under the new law. Families can find out more information on the Camp Lejeune Family Member program here.
DID YOU KNOW that the VA has extended the deadline for veterans to request status as a Camp Lejeune veteran until September 24, 2016 — and be eligible for retroactive reimbursement of out-of-pocket medical costs back to August 6, 2012, the day the legislation authorized the VA to begin providing benefits to Camp Lejeune veterans.
DID YOU KNOW a Dec. 12, 2014 law changed the VA health benefits eligibility dates for veterans and their families who lived at Camp Lejeune? The new eligibility period is living at Camp Lejeune for 30 days or more between Aug. 1, 1953 and Dec. 31, 1987, revising the previous eligibility start date, which had been Jan. 1, 1957.
And DID YOU KNOW that on August 3, 2015, the VA announced it will begin the review process for amending its regulations to establish presumptions of service connection for disability related to certain conditions caused by exposure to contaminated drinking water at Camp Lejeune?
Be sure you’re receiving the treatment and care you and your family need, or if you know someone who served or lived at Camp Lejeune, make sure they’re aware that disability compensation and health care benefits are available.
Membership in VetsHQ gives you an instant read on ANY AND ALL of the veteran benefits you may qualify for …. including any related to living in or service at Camp Lejeune.