7 similar early signs of Parkinson’s and TD that are easy to miss
Recognizing the subtle yet critical distinctions between Parkinson’s disease and Tardive Dyskinesia (TD) might be a challenging task for healthcare professionals. This is because these neurological conditions share some common signs, such as involuntary movements and speech difficulties. However, understanding their unique presentations is crucial for accurate diagnosis. Learning about the signs could also help curate the right treatment plan. Here are seven similar early signs between Parkinson’s and TD that are often overlooked.
Both Parkinson’s and TD can enhance anxiety levels in affected individuals. Managing not only the motor symptoms but also the emotional well-being of patients is crucial for their comprehensive care.
People with Parkinson’s disease and TD might also experience impaired gait. In Parkinson’s, it results in a shuffling, hesitant walk due to muscle rigidity, and balance problems. In TD, abnormal, jerky limb and trunk movements disrupt coordination, leading to an unsteady gait. These gait disturbances significantly affect mobility and daily life.
Problems with speech
Parkinson’s and TD often lead to pronounced speech difficulties due to involuntary movements affecting the tongue, lips, and facial muscles. This results in slurred speech, articulation challenges, and difficulties forming words, severely impeding effective communication.
Akathisia or feeling of restlessness, poses a shared challenge in people with Parkinson’s and TD. In Parkinson’s patients, it often emerges as a byproduct of motor discomfort due to bradykinesia and rigidity, leading patients to shift positions restlessly. In TD, akathisia may result from certain treatment options, which may cause restlessness and make it difficult for patients to remain still.
In Parkinson’s, dopamine deficiency and motor impairments contribute to emotional distress. TD’s involuntary movements may lead to social isolation and depression. Both conditions highlight the need for holistic care to enhance the overall well-being of patients.
Grunting in Parkinson’s disease and TD is an often overlooked phenomenon. In Parkinson’s, it could result from muscular stiffness affecting respiratory muscles, impeding breathing and causing involuntary grunting during exhalation. In contrast, TD-induced grunting stems from involuntary muscle movements impacting various body parts, including the chest and abdomen, creating sporadic vocalizations such as grunts and groans.
Although a similar symptom between both conditions, tongue protrusion presents differently in Parkinson’s and TD. In Parkinson’s, it might result from bradykinesia and muscle rigidity, causing limited tongue control and infrequent protrusion. Conversely, TD is marked by involuntary, repetitive tongue movements, leading to frequent and conspicuous tongue protrusion, often accompanied by lip smacking and grimacing.