In a continuation of recognizing Parkinson’s disease Awareness this week, we will be featuring the story of one medical professional with Parkinson’s disease. On Monday we overviewed the impacts the condition can have on people’s lives, and in doing so discovered a particularly remarkable story of a neurologist developing Parkinson’s disease, while treating patients for the same condition.
The story is that of David Blecker, a British neurologist with Parkinson’s disease. Blecker first noticed symptoms in his mid-forties, manifesting as a gait disturbance on his long distance runs. He hid this symptom, knowing it was a dystonia in his leg, but telling friends and colleagues it was a simple hip problem. Within a few years, Blecker began to experience tremors in his hand and leg.
The most significant warning sign though, came when Becker was demonstrating quick alternating movements to his patients and noticed that his dominant hand was lagging significantly slower than his non-dominant hand -- a symptom known as bradykinesia. He was also struggling to even walk the length of the golf course at which he used to play lengthy games.
This is when he realized that some of his patients being treated for Parkinson’s were actually performing better than him, and decided to reach out to one of his colleagues for a proper diagnosis and begin treatment.
“I could feel Parkinson’s disease creeping up on me, so when I finally summoned up the courage to have a colleague assess me and make the diagnosis, it was of no surprise; in fact, it was almost a relief,” Blecker said, in his article in the British Medical Journal.
Blecker began treatment on an L-dopa drug, and showed considerable symptom improvement. He then revealed his condition to his colleagues, and eventually to his patients -- whom he was treating for the same disease.
“The experience has deepened and enriched my understanding of the doctor–patient relationship, and I hope it has helped me to become a better neurologist,” Blecker said.
Want to hear more stories like this?
In addition to reporting clinical trial news and stories from within the patient community, we operate Citrus, a fully integrated recruitment and retention software. Citrus fits any clinical trial and simplifies the implementation of patient engagement in your clinical trial. Whether you are already working with CTMS systems or not, Citrus is the perfect add-on to make patient interaction effective.
Since 2015, our team has been hard at work raising awareness of clinical trials across the globe. A Forbes ‘30 Under 30’ company and a graduate of the renowned Techstar program in New York, Citruslabs is at the forefront of patient recruitment and retention technologies. With over 3 million patients now recorded on our databases, our patient recruitment dashboard is fast becoming the most efficient method of trial recruitment.
Now a #1 health app in 17 countries, our Mindmate app is helping to revolutionize the way we think about healthcare. Mindmate “[takes] senior care into the digital age” (Forbes, 2018) by providing people with the cognitive decline the essential tools to help them rebuild and maintain strong mental health. Trusted by millions of users, our health community continues to grow as the content available expands to the needs of individuals today.
With more than 200 research sites now using the Citrus platform to screen thousands of patients every month, researchers are now well on their way to finding new treatments for hundreds of different health conditions - something that just would not be possible without a technological solution. Make sure that your clinical trial is in the lucky 12% and turn that luck into guaranteed results with Citrus.
Check out what our customers have to say about us here.
And If you’d like to know more about how Citruslabs can help you recruit more effectively, get in touch with our team here.