What physiologic problem causes Parkinson’s disease

Michael, a 45-year-old, could not believe his ears when the healthcare provider told him he had Parkinson’s disease. “Isn’t that an old person’s disease?” he asked. However, he knew something had been very wrong for about 3 months. At first, he Feld more tired than usual, he had noticed a slight tremor, especially when he became fatigued. Michael’s wife pointed out that his “handshakes” were getting worse. Like many people first diagnosed with a degenerative nervous system disease, Michael has many questions and concerns. The following are just a few of his questions. As his nurse, how would you respond? Answer the following questions.

  1. What physiologic problem causes Parkinson’s disease and what is the etiology of the disease? How could a nurse describe this etiology to Michael?
  2. Eventually, Michael is prescribed levodopa and carbidopa (Sinemet) for his Parkinsonism. How does this medication work? What is the advantage of combining the two medications?
  3. What drug-related adverse effects would you discuss with Michael?
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