Living well with Parkinson disease (PD) is an art! A person with Parkinson (PwP) will experience debility beyond normal aging. To live well with PD involves addressing the decline of both the motor symptoms (ie, bradykinesia, hypokinesia, rigidity, and masked face) and nonmotor symptoms (ie, cognitive issues, depression, apathy, and anxiety) involved with this difficult disease as well as the loss of the hope for the likelihood of typical aging trajectory.
This edition of Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation has a focus on PD. The research articles and case studies included introduce the reader to some of the latest evidence to assist PwP and clinicians working with them to live well with PD.
A long-time colleague, physical therapist and yoga therapist Cheryl Van Demark, reminds us all the way to support the human through their lived experience of chronic disease has been mapped out for us since 1977 when the Biopsychosocial and Spiritual Perspective (BPS-S) model was introduced (Figure). In rehabilitation medicine, the present challenge is to move beyond our historical problem-oriented focus of medicine and adopt an opportunity-based focus in each domain of this model. How insightful could our rehabilitation plans of care be when patients are supported and empowered to optimize their resilience in the face of the adversity presented by their compromised health status?
Wholehearted whole person–focused health care invites a compassionate recognition of suffering and seeks to promote true healing despite the disease process. To accomplish this, we are charged to enlist all of the patient's health resources and assets to support the well-being of the individual. Treatment is directed toward what matters most in the life of persons we are rehabilitating, remembering to reflect their view of meaning, purpose, and value. In this way, we broaden the focus to nurture life and not just battle disease.
This edition of Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation is dedicated to my mother Charlotte Hull who lived well with PD for 30 years. Thanks Mom, for your hard work, love, and inspiration. I miss you!
—Valerie A. Carter, DPT, PT, NCS, GCS