Lorazepam for Parkinsons, breathing issues and anxiety

We want to relieve the anxiety among clients with Parkinsons with Lorazepam. Listening to their breathing at night and addiction to the med, makes us change our mind about daily use of Lorazepam. Per our experience, the client had difficulty breathing at 68 with Parkinsons. It also produces more thigh muscle cramps instead of relieving the cramps. Is there a better way?

Most neuro meds are addicting and results in the same health issues it is suppose to relieve.

Combine this med on as needed basis, not used daily with holistic home care with caring caregivers providing massage, extra care and compassion, healthy meals and lorazepam can only be used few times a week instead of daily.

Sometimes, the presence of caregivers relieve their anxiety without the need for medications. A full stomach also helps them sleep well and a regular massage before bedtime, legs and feet massage.

Call or text Motherhealth caregivers , 408-854-1883 , for bay area seniors with Parkinsons or other health issues for holistic home care.

Massage for seniors with cancer and Parkinsons

Many scientific studies have shown that oncology massage is effective in reducing symptoms such as stress, pain, anxiety, depression, nausea and fatigue in people who have had chemotherapy or surgery for cancer.


Most of our senior clients especially those with Parkinsons and Lung cancer love the massages given by their caregivers. Massage helps our cells grow. Even during chronic illness, massage provide relief, calms the mind and help clients feel good.
They are always looking forward to the massage. As if, their life here on earth is worth living for with loving massages.

Call or text 408-854-1883 for caregivers from Motherhealth in the greater bay area who incorporate massage in their caregiving tasks of assistance in daily living. Live-in care starts at $340 depending on level of care. Motherhealth@gmail.com is another way to contact us.

Trained and monitored caring caregivers are important in home care

  • Empowered staff with their customer experience successes
  • Informed teams of areas for improvement as patient experiences unfold
  • Enabled management, with actionable insights, to drive operational changes

Motherhealth trains and monitors its bayarea caregivers to have consistent care matching the home care needs of clients. This is very important for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s clients.

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Do Parkinson’s Medications Affect Sleep?

Do Parkinson’s Medications Affect Sleep?
Some PD meds, like MAO-B inhibitors (selegiline, rasagiline, safanimide) and amantadine (a medication used to treat dyskinesia), have alerting properties and may make insomnia worse. These medications are usually taken earlier in the day, so they do not impact sleep. Sinemet does not usually have a big impact on sleep compared to dopamine agonists.

However, nighttime hallucinations can emerge with increased intake of dopaminergic drugs, especially in people with more advanced Parkinson’s.
There are other possible causes of hallucinations, so if you begin to experience this, talk to your doctor right away. For more information, get your free copy of the Parkinson’s Foundation book Psychosis by calling Helpline at 1-800-4PD-INFO (473-4636) or online at Parkinson.org/books.

Sleep hygiene refers to the behaviors and habits that we can control that affect our bodies day-night cycling and readiness to go to sleep or be alert at a given time of day. Follow these tips for better sleeping habits:

  1. It is especially important for individuals with sleep difficulties to set and follow regular bed/sleep and wake times with a goal of spending at least 7 but not much more than 8 hours in bed each night. Bedtimes should be chosen based on a target waking time (i.e. don’t go to bed at 8 pm if you don’t want to be up at 4 am!).
  2. The bed should be used only as a place of sleeping, reading and watching television should be done elsewhere.
  3. Daytime napping should be limited to one nap of no greater than 30 minutes, as longer naps do not seem to provide any greater benefit to daytime fatigue but do disrupt sleep drive for the coming night.
  4. Lastly it is vital that persons with these sleep disorders are exposed to as much light (preferably real daylight) and physical/mental stimulation during the day as possible. Light is an important synchronizer of the sleep-wake cycle and many elderly individuals and individuals with chronic illness have reduced exposure to bright light.

Physical and mental activity stimulates the alerting and wakefulness centers in the brain and increase blood and oxygen flow to the brain. Most importantly, maintaining good sleep and wake habits can improve many sleep issues without the need of medications.

Gut-Dwelling Bacterium Consumes Parkinson’s Drug

Gut-Dwelling Bacterium Consumes Parkinson’s Drug
Posted on June 25th, 2019 by Dr. Francis Collins

Gut bacteria eating a pill

Scientists continue to uncover the many fascinating ways in which the trillions of microbes that inhabit the human body influence our health. Now comes yet another surprising discovery: a medicine-eating bacterium residing in the human gut that may affect how well someone responds to the most commonly prescribed drug for Parkinson’s disease.

There have been previous hints that gut microbes might influence the effectiveness of levodopa (L-dopa), which helps to ease the stiffness, rigidity, and slowness of movement associated with Parkinson’s disease. Now, in findings published in Science, an NIH-funded team has identified a specific, gut-dwelling bacterium that consumes L-dopa [1]. The scientists have also identified the bacterial genes and enzymes involved in the process.

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative condition in which the dopamine-producing cells in a portion of the brain called the substantia nigra begin to sicken and die. Because these cells and their dopamine are critical for controlling movement, their death leads to the familiar tremor, difficulty moving, and the characteristic slow gait. As the disease progresses, cognitive and behavioral problems can take hold, including depression, personality shifts, and sleep disturbances.

For the 10 million people in the world now living with this neurodegenerative disorder, and for those who’ve gone before them, L-dopa has been for the last 50 years the mainstay of treatment to help alleviate those motor symptoms. The drug is a precursor of dopamine, and, unlike dopamine, it has the advantage of crossing the blood-brain barrier. Once inside the brain, an enzyme called DOPA decarboxylase converts L-dopa to dopamine.

Unfortunately, only a small fraction of L-dopa ever reaches the brain, contributing to big differences in the drug’s efficacy from person to person. Since the 1970s, researchers have suspected that these differences could be traced, in part, to microbes in the gut breaking down L-dopa before it gets to the brain.

To take a closer look in the new study, Vayu Maini Rekdal and Emily Balskus, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, turned to data from the NIH-supported Human Microbiome Project (HMP). The project used DNA sequencing to identify and characterize the diverse collection of microbes that populate the healthy human body.

The researchers sifted through the HMP database for bacterial DNA sequences that appeared to encode an enzyme capable of converting L-dopa to dopamine. They found what they were looking for in a bacterial group known as Enterococcus, which often inhabits the human gastrointestinal tract.

Next, they tested the ability of seven representative Enterococcus strains to transform L-dopa. Only one fit the bill: a bacterium called Enterococcus faecalis, which commonly resides in a healthy gut microbiome. In their tests, this bacterium avidly consumed all the L-dopa, using its own version of a decarboxylase enzyme. When a specific gene in its genome was inactivated, E. faecalis stopped breaking down L-dopa.

These studies also revealed variability among human microbiome samples. In seven stool samples, the microbes tested didn’t consume L-dopa at all. But in 12 other samples, microbes consumed 25 to 98 percent of the L-dopa!

The researchers went on to find a strong association between the degree of L-dopa consumption and the abundance of E. faecalis in a particular microbiome sample. They also showed that adding E. faecalis to a sample that couldn’t consume L-dopa transformed it into one that could.

So how can this information be used to help people with Parkinson’s disease? Answers are already appearing. The researchers have found a small molecule that prevents the E. faecalis decarboxylase from modifying L-dopa—without harming the microbe and possibly destabilizing an otherwise healthy gut microbiome.

The finding suggests that the human gut microbiome might hold a key to predicting how well people with Parkinson’s disease will respond to L-dopa, and ultimately improving treatment outcomes. The finding also serves to remind us just how much the microbiome still has to tell us about human health and well-being.

Reference:

[1] Discovery and inhibition of an interspecies gut bacterial pathway for Levodopa metabolism. Maini Rekdal V, Bess EN, Bisanz JE, Turnbaugh PJ, Balskus EP. Science. 2019 Jun 14;364(6445).

Links:

Parkinson’s Disease Information Page (National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke/NIH)