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Parkinson's Disease HOL-emblem1-web.GIF (3556 bytes)

Who gets Parkinson's disease?

Parkinson's disease commonly occurs in older individuals, although it may also occur in young adults. It is present worldwide and in all populations. Men have a slightly higher prevalence rate than women. No race or specific region of the world has been found to be completely devoid of the disease.

What is the mean age of onset of Parkinson's disease?

The mean age of onset of Parkinson's disease is approximately 60 years. It usually occurs in patients over 50 years of age, and onset before age 25 is uncommon. The incidence and prevalence of the disease generally increase with increasing age.

How common is Parkinson's disease?

Average crude prevalence (the total number of people with the disease in a population at a given time) rates for Parkinson's disease have been estimated at 120-180 per 100,000 in Caucasian populations) and the prevalence of the disease in individuals over 65 years of age is roughly 1%. Incidence (the number of new cases of the disease diagnosed in a population during a given time period) rates have been estimated at 20 per 100,000.

Does Parkinson's disease occur more frequently in certain locatiom?

The highest prevalence of Parkinson's disease is in North America and Europe, while the lowest prevalence rates have been found in China, Japan, Nigeria, and Sardinia).

The Parsi community of Bombay, India was recently found to have the highest prevalence rates reported to date. The Parsis are a people who migrated to India between the seventh and tenth centuries from Iran. They have a closed community, and rarely allow inter-marriages with other races or religious groups. Whether genetic factors in a closed community or some environmental toxin present in the area is causing this high prevalence is unknown.

Is Parkinson's disease more common in Caucasians or African-Americans?

Studies conducted in the United States have generally found a lower prevalence of Parkinson's disease among African-Americans. Even in Africa, the prevalence has been found to be lower in blacks than in whites or Indians.

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