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Seniors May Benefit from New Parkinson’s Drugs

Recently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved two breakthrough medications that will help seniors with Parkinson’s disease experience less time between uncontrollable symptoms. The medications have not yet been released throughout the United States, but they will be distributed by April 2015. As a leading provider of Parkinson’s care in Las Vegas, Home Care Assistance would like to provide further information on Parkinson’s and how these two new drugs can help.

Parkinson’s develops when the brain is unable to produce the necessary amounts of dopamine, a chemical in the brain that helps brain cells communicate with one another. Currently, medications for Parkinson’s assist the brain in producing dopamine to prevent symptoms. Most commonly, these medications are made of an inhibitor called carbidopa and an amino acid called levodopa.


Rytary will be available in an immediate release capsule as well as an extended release capsule. The capsule is easily opened and can be added to easy-to-eat foods such as applesauce, making this method of administration ideal for seniors who have problems swallowing. Rytary contains carbidopa and levodopa similarly to the other medications because this combination proved effective in stopping tremors, rigidity, imbalance, and slow movement. However, in clinical trials Rytary was shown to outlast the other medications in controlling Parkinson’s symptoms. The goal of Rytary is to reduce the amount of time a senior must go with uncontrolled symptoms.


Duopa is a medication that will only be available through a surgically placed medical device. An infusion pump and tube will directly deliver the medication into the small intestine to provide immediate relief. Like Rytary, Duopa is formulated from the same inhibitors and amino acids as the previous medications for Parkinson’s disease. However, in clinical trials it effectively stopped symptoms such as tremors, muscle rigidity, unsteady balance, and slow movement in seniors with Parkinson’s for up to sixteen hours, longer than previous Parkinson’s medications.

For more information on Parkinson’s or to find an experienced Parkinson’s caregiver, reach out to us for reliable home care. Las Vegas caregivers can assist your senior loved one with a wide variety of tasks from cooking to mobility support, and provide companionship when he or she most needs it. Call (702) 550-3185 and schedule a complimentary, no-obligation consultation with one of our trusted Care Managers.