Co-existing conditions may impact how people with Parkinson’s disease perceive stigma


Author: Scarlett SherriffPublished: 21 July 2022

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According to a study from the US, people with Parkinson’s who also live with certain co-existing conditions may experience greater perceived stigma and lower quality of life than those who do not.

Published in the journal ‘General Psychiatry’, the study examined how conditions like thyroid disease, depression and anxiety impact perceptions of stigma and quality of life among people with Parkinson’s.

The researchers surveyed 196 participants who had previously been part of the Boston University Online Survey Study of Parkinson’s Disease – a study exploring the experiences of those living with the condition. Of these participants, 79% reported having at least one co-existing condition.

Whilst factors like education level and age at onset were identified as influencing factors, the researchers found a correlation between the total number of conditions and participants’ perceptions of stigma as well as poorer quality of life. The study described the findings as important for “care partners, healthcare professionals and individuals with Parkinson’s themselves”.

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