About Fight Parkinson's
Fight Parkinson’s is now the operating name for Parkinson’s Victoria. The A Walk in the Park event has always been Parkinson's Victoria's biggest annual fundraiser that would bring the community together. Now we are Fight Parkinson's we are so excited to once again put this event to support people living with Parkinson's.
Early in 2021, we consulted with the Parkinson’s and Atypical Parkinson’s community – we asked what you needed from us and how we should do it. You told us we needed to lift the voice and the profile of Parkinson’s in the community and strongly lead sector coordination.
Based on what you told us, we have repositioned ourselves to better represent and meet the needs of our community. We made a very considered decision and have adopted a new name – Fight Parkinson’s. It’s estimated that 27,000 Victorians are living with Parkinson’s. More than 100,000 Australians today have Parkinson’s and 38 more people are diagnosed every day. Parkinson’s and Atypical Parkinson’s (PSP, MSA CBS) are life-changing conditions, with no cure and no way to slow their progression.
We believe that with strong sector coordination and leadership, and greater community and government support, we can realise better outcomes for people living with Parkinson’s or Atypical Parkinson’s.
If you or anyone you know needs support please don't hesitate to contact us on 1800 644 189.
More than 100,000 Australians have Parkinson's
In Australia, more than 38 people are diagnosed with Parkinson’s every single day
It's estimated that 27,000 Victorians are living with Parkinson's
Parkinson's is the second most common neurological condition seen in the community
What is Parkinson’s?
Parkinson’s is a progressive neurological condition that affects people from all walks of life. It is quite common, with approximately 80,000 Australians, including 27,000 Victorians living with Parkinson’s.
The average age of diagnosis is 65 years, however younger people can be diagnosed with Parkinson’s too. This is referred to as Young Onset Parkinson’s.
It is not easy to diagnose Parkinson’s. There are no laboratory tests (such as a blood test or brain scan), so it is important that the diagnosis is made by a specialist, such as a neurologist. The specialist will examine for any physical signs of Parkinson’s and take a detailed history of symptoms.
Parkinson’s is categorised by clinicians as a “movement disorder”. However it doesn’t just affect movement. Non-motor symptoms such as pain, depression and problems with memory and sleep can also occur and have an impact on the day to day life of the person with Parkinson’s.
Treatments and Professional Support
While there is currently not a cure for Parkinson's, there are a range of treatments that can help to manage the day-to-day symptoms.
The most common treatment for Parkinson's is through medication. Parkinson's medication primarily works by increasing the levels of dopamine in the brain, and optimising the brain's use of dopamine.
Every person with Parkinson’s has a different experience of the condition. Your GP or specialist will aim to find the treatment that is best for you as an individual. Surgical options are available for some people with Parkinson’s, depending on their symptoms. There are a number of health professionals that can help people with Parkinson's manage their daily life.
Many people with Parkinson’s find complementary therapies beneficial too.
Living with Parkinson’s
People living with Parkinson's can continue to live long and rewarding lives. There are many ways to live well including exercising and eating well. Other aspects of living with Parkinson's such as driving, working, relationships, holidays and travel are explained.
Exercise is a very important part of helping to manage the symptoms of Parkinson’s. Second to medication, it is probably the most important thing you can do to stay well.
A healthy and well-balanced diet is encouraged for people living with Parkinson's to ensure daily energy and nutrient requirements are met.
Living with Parkinson's can have an effect on many drivers, but it doesn't necessarily mean that you will be stopped from driving.
Holidays and Travel
Australians like to travel and travelling when you are living with Parkinson’s can continue. Extra planning will ensure that people with Parkinson’s can manage well and enjoy their time away.
Many people with Parkinson’s are working and will continue to work for a considerable amount of time.
Relationships and Family Life
Whether you have Parkinson’s or care for someone with the condition, Parkinson’s may affect your relationships.
Caring for someone with Parkinson's
The impact of Parkinson’s goes beyond the person who has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. Partners, family members and friends of the person who has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s will be well aware of how challenging the condition can be for them and those closest to them.
Parkinson’s is not a condition commonly associated with needing to be hospitalised. However, people with Parkinson’s may need to be admitted to hospital at some point, whether it is in relation to their condition or for another medical reason.
Mobility and Disability Aids
A large variety of mobility and disability aids for everyday living is available to help people with Parkinson's. Mobility and disability aids can help people maintain independence in the activities that are most important to them.
Talking to People
The decision to disclose your diagnosis of Parkinson’s is a very personal one. You may find it relatively easy to talk about Parkinson’s, or you may be more private or find it hard to come up with the right words.