Patient Testimonial: Parkinson’s Disease Clinical Research

‘The first step in finding the avenue for a cure’

In 2018, Veronica Arevalo was experiencing neurological symptoms and didn’t know what could be wrong. Her boyfriend took her to the hospital where she received a neurological exam. There, at age 48, Veronica was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, the disease her dad had been diagnosed with just 14 years earlier.

“I was always told it wasn’t hereditary,” Veronica said. “But when I was diagnosed in 2018, I said there had to be more to it, because there’s not a lot of information on the types that are hereditary and the types that aren’t.”

This winter, Veronica came across an ad for a Parkinson’s observational research study at Pharmacology Research Institute (PRI) in Encino, California — a part of Wake Research’s site network. Upon learning that the basis of the study was giving a blood sample to look for the genetic markers associated with Parkinson’s, Veronica signed up.

“When my dad was diagnosed, I did my research, and I found that there really haven’t been that many changes or advancements from when he was diagnosed to now,” she said. “When I saw what the study was for, I said, ‘OK, this is actually something that can provide some results to where Parkinson’s is coming from and why.’”

Veronica and her boyfriend near their home in California.

No known cause

To date, there is no known exact cause for Parkinson’s disease. Existing research has suggested that genetic factors play a 10-15 percent role in the cause, and that those who have close relatives with Parkinson’s will have a higher chance of developing the disease in their lifetime.

Researchers have found that the genetic cause is due to specific gene mutations linked to Parkinson’s disease that are hereditary. The most frequently known genetic causes are mutations in the LRRK2 (Leucine-rich repeat kinase) gene and in the GBA (glucocerebrosidase) gene.

The study that Veronica participated in at PRI is looking for the LRRK2 genetic marker in individuals with Parkinson’s disease or whose family members have Parkinson’s disease.

“My mom didn’t believe that Parkinson’s was what I had because she believed my dad’s was caused by Agent Orange when he served in the Vietnam War,” Veronica said. “Then my dad felt responsible. So, if my results come back with this gene, I can tell him that it’s this specific marker, it’s a genetic thing, and I can put his mind at ease.”

Hope for a cure

Veronica hopes that for those who participate in this study, their results may not only give them a peace of mind, but will help contribute to finding out more about Parkinson’s disease — why it develops, a way to treat it, and possibly, finding a cure.

“Once I get my results back, then if I do have that gene, it will give me some kind of knowledge that they’re working on an advancement as to why Parkinson’s develops,” she said.

And she hopes more people affected by this disease will take the step to participate in the study and further contribute to research on Parkinson’s disease.

“People can get a little nervous sometimes about studies, but it’s very easy to do,” she said. “This is the first step in finding the avenue for a cure.”

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease and you are interested in participating in our study, visit our Parkinson’s study page to find out more information and sign up.

3 Comments on “Patient Testimonial: Parkinson’s Disease Clinical Research”

  1. It’s interesting to know that Parkinson’s disease is not hereditary. I have a friend who is interested in learning more about early state Parkinson’s clinical trials because her mother had it. She is wondering if she might also be have it when she grows older.

  2. I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease a year ago at the age of 67. For several months I had noticed tremors in my right hand and the shaking of my right foot when I was sitting. My normally beautiful cursive writing was now small cramped printing. And I tended to lose my balance. Neurologist had me walk down the hall and said I didn’t swing my right arm. I had never noticed! I was in denial for a while as there is no history in my family of parents and five older siblings, but I had to accept I had classic symptoms. I was taking amantadine and carbidopa/levodopa and was about to start physical therapy to strengthen muscles. Finally, I was introduced to Kycuyu Health Clinic and their effective Parkinson’s herbal protocol. This protocol relieved symptoms significantly, even better than the medications I was given. After First month on treatment, my tremors mysterious stopped, had improvement walking. After I completed the treatment, all symptoms were gone. I live a more productive life. I was fortunate to have the loving support of my husband and family. I make it a point to appreciate every day!

  3. At the end of the full treatment course, the disease is totally under control. No case of dementia, hallucination, weakness, muscle pain or tremors. family doctor started me on Health Herbs Clinic Parkinson’s Disease Herbal mixture, 2 months into treatment I improved dramatically. At the end of the full treatment course, the disease is totally under control. No case of dementia, hallucination, weakness, muscle pain or tremors. visit healthherbsclinic . c o m

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