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Northwest Iowa Parkinson's Disease Symposium Focuses on Living Well

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Over 100 people from the Siouxland area will attend the Northwest Iowa Parkinson’s Disease Symposium on Saturday, October 25, 2014 at the Hilton Garden Inn in Sioux City from 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Speakers from around the nation will address topics such as Parkinson’s research, how to live well with the disease and caregiving.

“Although Parkinson’s disease will seldom take a person’s life, it forever alters the way one lives their life,” said John Krumbholz, board president of the Iowa Chapter of the American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA).

A native of Cedar Rapids, Krumbholz lives with Parkinson’s and wants Iowans impacted by the disease to know that there is help.

“No one has to go through Parkinson’s alone. This is why we hold up to three annual symposiums and conferences throughout the state,” he said.

Parkinson’s disease is a neurological disease that affects the central nervous system and is characterized by tremors, rigidity, slow movement and problems with walking and balance. Currently, there is no cure for the disease. There are over 1.5 million people in the United States who have Parkinson’s disease and over 100,000 are diagnosed each year in the United States. Parkinson’s disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s.

Lynn K. Struck, MD, a neurologist and movement disorders specialist at UnityPoint Health – Des Moines and Medical Director for the Information and Referral Center funded by the Iowa Chapter of the APDA, sees many patients with Parkinson’s from across the state. She emphasizes the need for people to be well informed about the disease.

“Parkinson’s affects more than just the person diagnosed. Families are impacted as they try to learn more on how to help their loved one and health professionals need to understand how to provide the best care for the patient,” said Struck. “Unfortunately, there is no cure for Parkinson’s. It is a chronic and progressive disease. I encourage everyone impacted by Parkinson’s to educate themselves. You have to be your own advocate.”

This year’s Northwest Iowa Parkinson’s Disease Symposium includes the following speakers:

  • Cherian A. Karunapuzha, MD, Neurologist and Assistant Professor, Oklahoma University
  • John Baumann, Motivational Speaker (Who Just So Happens to Have Parkinson’s)
  • Katy Hendron, PT, DPT, NCS, Physical Therapist, Center for Neurorehabilitation, Boston University
  • Mike Kendall, Social Worker, Eyerly Ball Community Mental Health Services, Des Moines
For more information on the Symposium and for registration details visit www.apdaiowa.org. This event is sponsored by the Iowa Chapter of the APDA and Medtronic.