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Recording and Managing Medications for Someone With Parkinson's Disease

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Medication management is the most important part of controlling Parkinson symptoms. Knowing what to expect from these medications can be extremely helpful.

  • Always be sure that the person in your care takes the medication exactly as prescribed. Keep an accurate list of these medications and when they should be taken.
  • Never make any changes to these medications without talking to the doctor or specialist first. However, because everyone's treatment needs are different, the specialist may want to try changing the amount or timing of drugs, within certain limits. If you are worried or have any questions, don't be afraid to ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
  • It is helpful if the person with Parkinson's keeps a record of his or her treatment, including whether the medications are effective and have any side effects. Provide help in keeping this diary and add your own observations.
  • Learn to recognize changes in symptoms that may, for example, indicate that the person is experiencing wearing-off of their medication.

NOTE: Sometimes people with PD take extra levodopa doses to avoid feeling extreme immobility (frozen) due to the wearing-off phenomenon. If you think the person in your care is taking too much medication, mention it to the neurologist for advice on readjusting the dosage.

You must have a careful system for keeping track of medications:

  • when medications should be given
  • how they should be given
  • when they were actually given