Anxiety and Parkinson’s Disease: The Patient’s Perspective
People with Parkinson’s disease (PWP) commonly experience stress and anxiety. We continue to learn about the various manifestations, causes, treatments and implications of anxiety for PWP. What appears to be missing is a deeper appreciation of and awareness about the patient’s perspective of his or her symptoms of anxiety and the perceived impact that anxiety has on day-to-day life. In our survey, 26% of the participants reported that anxiety was present prior to the diagnosis of PD, and 35% of the participants reported experiencing moderate to extreme generalized anxiety. A large number of the participants reported that anxiety has a moderate to extreme impact on everyday activities, including standing up and walking (fear of falling), interactions with others, engagement in hobbies/leisure activities, engagement in volunteer activities or work, health status, and overall “quality of life.” Use of medications and engagement in non-medication-based intervention for anxiety were reported by many of the participants. Information about and recommendations pertaining to anxiety for individuals with PD are discussed in the report.