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New laboratory tests would speed up Parkinson’s diagnosis and research

Parkinson's diagnosis

Researchers have long wanted a test in the lab that can tell if someone has Parkinson’s disease. Currently, doctors use physical symptoms to diagnose the progressive condition: stiffness, a halting gait, tremors, or difficulty balancing A recent study found that these symptoms are used to diagnose about 90,000 Americans annually.

At first, these symptoms may not be obvious, and it may be difficult to distinguish Parkinson’s disease from other conditions until the disease is more advanced and has affected more parts of the brain.

New Discoveries on Parkinson’s Diagnosis

Parkinson’s influences the sensory system and, notwithstanding development related side effects, can bring on some issues, for example, misery, tension, mental impedance, inconvenience resting, mind flights and loss of smell. It doesn’t kill anyone, but it can cause serious problems. The specific reason is generally obscure.

According to Stanford University professor of neurology and neurological sciences Dr. Kathleen Poston, who participated in a study of the SYNTap test, the tests usher in “a bit of a new chapter for us in Parkinson’s disease, where we can really focus on biology.”

The SYNTap test was administered to 1,100 participants in a study that was published Wednesday in the journal Lancet Neurology. These participants included people who had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, people who had genetic or clinical risk factors, and healthy controls. The test correctly excluded people with Parkinson’s disease 96% of the time and correctly identified people with Parkinson’s disease 88% of the time.

The test was most accurate in people who also lost their sense of smell but had no known genetic risk factors for Parkinson’s disease. In this gathering, the test accurately distinguished the sickness the vast majority of the time. The accuracy dropped to 78% if they did not lose their sense of smell.

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