Job 4:14 - Fear and trembling seized me and made all my bones shake.
It started as a small tremor.
Whenever he held up his hand, it would shake. He thought that it was just a case of nerves. He was often nervous at social events.
But then the tremor moved on to his right hand, then his entire left and right arm. He was getting a little worried by now, which tended to make him more nervous which exasperated the tremors.
His wife noticed also and wanted him to see a doctor. But he would have none of that. Perhaps in the back of his mind, if he saw a doctor then it would make it real.
One day his head began to shake. This was very alarming to him, but he still refused to believe it was anything but his nerves.
Then, he fell.
The shaking was taking over his whole body, and he was having trouble walking. His wife begged him to go to the doctor. After the fall, he didn’t need to be convinced that he needed to see a doctor.
The doctor examined him and performed several tests which showed what the man was afraid of – he had Parkinson's disease.
The doctor explained the disease to him saying that Parkinson’s does not only cause tremors. Other symptoms included moving slowly and loss of voluntary movement, becoming stiff in the parts of the body affected (he was already feeling this), having trouble standing or walking and affecting balance and coordinating movement, fewer facial expressions, not being able to multitask and trouble concentrating, depression and anxiety, trouble sleeping, low blood pressure when standing, being constipated, trouble with speech and swallowing, unexplained pains, drooling and loss of smell.
To the man and his wife this long list was overwhelming, but his doctor was patient and when explaining the symptoms one way was confusing, the doctor discussed it another way.
His wife then asked what the doctor could do to treat the disease. The doctor told her there was no cure for Parkinson’s, but if her husband had come in sooner he would’ve had more treatment options. The older the man got, the more difficult to treat. The wife told the doctor that she’d tried to make an appointment earlier, but her husband had refused.
Her husband let out a loud sigh, and asked if there was anything he could do now. The doctor then explained some treatment options such as the drug levadopa and other medications which could control symptoms for many years, but the older the patient got the shorter the lifespan. The man could also try a surgery called deep brain stimulation (DBS) where they place a wire in the brain for stimulating parts of the brain affected.
Learning that you or someone you care about has Parkinson’s Disease can be tough to hear. But the more you know about the disease the better the chances that you can detect symptoms so as to see a physician for earlier on for treatment. Healthlife.com posts the article, “Symptoms, Treatment, Prevention and More,” which can help the reader become more knowledgeable about the symptoms so as to be treated sooner. It also lists treatment options.
When someone begins to show symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease it can be scary. But with the right doctor matched up with the best treatment, there is hope.
My father was the man in this story. It was hard watching him lose weight and seeing him shaking and losing the ability to stand up without help. But I knew that our family wasn’t alone fighting this disease.
Take a look at the verse above. The Scripture talks about when a man named Job, in the Bible, lost everything including all of his family except his wife. Job had reason to feel like the world was shaking. But he turned to God and in the end he received more than he had in the beginning. When we lose a part of our lives to a debilitating disease, it’s important to remember that God has strengthened many people who were struggling with a chronic illness. Turn to him and he will give you that strength and peace to know you’re not alone in it.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.