According to a team of French researchers, common drugs which a lot of Parkinson’s Disease patients are taking might these people into compulsive gamblers, shoppers or sex addicts. It seems that there might be a problem with the dopamine agonists and controlling some irresistible needs. Binge eating might also be a possible compulsive effect of these common drugs. According to experts, over half of the people taking them to deal with this disease might one day become victims of impulse control disorders.
About one million people in the United States are living with Parkinson’s Disease. In the United Kingdom, there are 127,000 patients. In the people with this progressive neurological disorder, dopamine gets gradually reduced. This is the chemical in the brain that is responsible with movement. Treatments for the disease include dopamine agonists, which activate the dopamine receptors, and levodopa, which converts to this chemical in the brain. In order to come up with this result, the team of French researchers followed 411 Parkinson’s Disease patients over the course of three years. The team quizzed them about certain behaviors like compulsive shopping or binge eating. There was a very big difference between the people who had taken the drugs and those who had not.
Common Parkinson’s Disease drugs might have unusual side effects
From the group who had never taken the drugs, 12% of people struggled with these impulsive control disorders and what they brought. By comparison, in the other group, 52% of people struggled with them. There are two drugs called pramipexole and ropinirole who pose the highest risk of developing these compulsive disorders and symptoms.
Of those with compulsive disorders, the team followed 30 who stopped taking the drugs. The symptoms gradually stopped. Moreover, about half of the people stopped having problems altogether after one year. The conclusion here is that these disorders are a lot more common than we think and should be treated seriously.
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