Parkinson's Disease and Depression

Symptoms of Depression

Healthcare providers must recognize a number of specific symptoms before diagnosing clinical depression. They will also consider how long the symptoms have been present.
If a person has five or more of the following symptoms for two weeks or longer, a diagnosis of depression may be made.
  • A persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness and pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, and being "slowed down"
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Changes in appetite or eating (either much less or much more) or a significant weight loss or gain
  • Restlessness and irritability
  • Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
  • Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain.
People with Parkinson's disease who suffer from depression often have different symptoms from those without Parkinson's. People with Parkinson's disease and depression might have symptoms that also include:
  • Higher rates of anxiety
  • Sadness without guilt or self-blame
  • Lower suicide rates despite high rates of suicidal thoughts.
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Parkinson's Disease Information

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