Parkinson’s at a young age –

about help and self-help

A post by Jurgen Zender


Parkinson's at a young age - about help and self-help

largely unnoticed by the public, the people who develop Parkinson's are getting younger and younger. It is now no longer uncommon for the neurodegenerative disease to appear even before the age of 30. 

This naturally poses a particular challenge for the medical profession, given the variety of symptoms in younger people, Parkinson's is least likely to be suspected.

Not long ago, the Central Institute of the Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians had to put up with harsh criticism because it simply did not take into account the under 50 year olds when calculating the incidence of Parkinson's disease.

But Parkinson's self-help is also facing new challenges, since the expectations of a 70-year-old patient of self-help are completely different than those of a 30-year-old.

It is not for nothing that more and more self-help organizations specializing in this young patient group are emerging. The most famous of them are “JuPa“, as a branch of the German Parkinson Association, “Young and Parkinson's“,“ParkinSonline” and the federal association “Parkinson's youngsters", to name just a few. The self-help organization is a bit out of line PingPong Parkinson, which covers the entire age range, but naturally appeals to younger people because of its sporting focus and already has around 1000 members.

Since, in addition to my job as publisher of the Parkinson Journal, I am also involved as the regional manager for Upper Bavaria at PingPongParkinson, I also focus my attention and my commitment on people with Parkinson's disease at a young age.

For example, I recently got to know and appreciate a 33-year-old academic with Parkinson's disease, who described his path from the first symptoms to diagnosis and the first visits to a self-help organization in detail to me. 

His story, scenically enhanced with suitable image and video material, gives us an insight into his world of thoughts and feelings, on the way from the first symptoms to the final diagnosis and ends with his experiences in the world of self-help.

 Munich, December 7.12th 2022, Jurgen Zender

Stay tuned.


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