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Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a movement disorder that causes tremors (shaking), muscle stiffness, and a range of other symptoms. At Allegheny Health Network’s (AHN) Cahouet Center for Comprehensive Parkinson’s Care, our specialists are experienced in some of the most effective and innovative Parkinson’s treatments, offering the potential for symptom relief.

Our personalized, comprehensive care approach is designed for the unique needs of people with Parkinson’s disease. Patients will face a variety of challenges today and in the future. We’re prepared to treat their symptoms and improve their quality of life every step of the way.

What is Parkinson’s disease?

Parkinson’s disease results from the loss of nerve cells that make dopamine in the brain. Dopamine helps people regulate movements and emotional responses. Parkinson’s disease causes a range of motor symptoms that affect how you move. It can also lead to difficulty sleeping or mood changes.

The condition is progressive, which means it worsens over time. At AHN’s Cahouet Center for Comprehensive Parkinson’s Care, an expert team of neurologists, neurosurgeons, therapists and support staff are dedicated to treating every symptom of the disease. Patients at the Center will have access to the latest treatments, therapies, and educational and community resources.

Learn more about the AHN’s Cahouet Center for Comprehensive Parkinson’s Care.

Parkinson’s disease symptoms

People experience Parkinson’s symptoms differently. As nerve cell damage worsens, people may notice an increased severity of existing symptoms or new symptoms may occur.

People with Parkinson’s often experience:

Motor symptoms: 

  • Problems moving, such as from stiffness in your arms or legs. 
  • Slight shaking of the hands or fingers, called a tremor, that happens when you’re sitting or resting   
  • Loss of balance

Non-motor symptoms: 

  • Constipation or other bowel changes
  • Sleep problems, such as insomnia
  • Mood changes, such as depression or a general disinterest in
    things you used to love

Get expert Parkinson’s disease treatment at AHN

Our neurologists have extensive training in the diagnosis and treatment of movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. Treatments today largely focus on improving symptoms, however, researchers continue to explore what exactly causes Parkinson’s disease so they can find a cure.  We also participate in clinical trials that study new ways to treat this condition.

After a thorough evaluation of your symptoms, our care team provides a treatment plan that addresses your unique, individual needs. You may find that a combination of therapies helps ease your symptoms. Because the condition is progressive, we meet with you regularly to address any symptoms that worsen or change over time.

At AHN, our specialists have a deep knowledge of the most effective Parkinson’s treatments available today:

  • Medication: Your physician will help determine which medications would benefit you most, based on your symptoms and specific challenges. The medications you take (or the dosage) may change as the condition progresses.
  • Physical therapy: Certain exercises or activities, such as boxing, may improve Parkinson’s symptoms. We work closely with Parkinson Foundation Western Pennsylvania to help you find Parkinson’s-specific resources and activities that may benefit you.
  • Speech or occupational therapy: Our specially trained speech and occupational therapists can help you relearn how to complete daily activities that have become difficult due to symptoms.
  • Surgery: Certain patients experience significant symptom relief from neurosurgical procedures, such as deep brain stimulation (DBS). Our specialists have performed hundreds of these innovative procedures, which involve surgically implanting electrodes into the brain to regulate impulses. Read how DBS changed the life of Richard, an AHN patient with Parkinson’s disease.

Contact us

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, know that you don’t have to face the challenges alone. To schedule an appointment or learn more about services at the AHN Cahouet Center for Comprehensive Parkinson’s Care, call (412) 359-8850 in Pittsburgh or (814) 452-7575 in Erie.

If you're an existing patient, you can also call (412) DOCTORS (412) 362-8677 in Pittsburgh or request an appointment with AHN neuroscience services.

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575 Lincoln Ave.
Bellevue, PA 15202
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575 Coal Valley Rd.
Jefferson Hills, PA 15025
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