If you seem to … You'll be asked to complete a form providing more information about your condition, as well as details of your doctors and specialists.

Dopamine acts as a messenger between the parts of the brain and nervous system that help control and co-ordinate body movements.If these nerve cells die or become damaged, the amount of dopamine in the brain is reduced. Your doctor will base a diagnosis on your symptoms, medical history and a detailed physical examination.Your GP will talk to you about the problems you're experiencing and may ask you to perform some simple mental or physical tasks, such as moving or walking around, to help with the diagnosis.In the early stages, your GP may find it difficult to say whether you definitely have the condition because symptoms are usually mild.If your GP suspects Parkinson's disease, you'll be referred to a specialist.

This means the dose may need to be increased from time to time.Long-term use of levodopa is also linked to problems such as uncontrollable, jerky muscle movements (dyskinesias) and "on-off" effects, where the person rapidly switches between being able to move (on) and being immobile (off).Dopamine agonists act as a substitute for dopamine in the brain and have a similar but milder effect compared with levodopa.

Your GP surgery will have details of these.Some people find it helpful to talk to others with Parkinson's disease, either at a local support group or in an internet chat room.It's worth taking time to think about your specific needs and what would help you achieve the best quality of life.For example, you may wish to consider equipment, help in your home, and home adaptations.They can offer the support and advice you may need if you're living with Parkinson's disease, and can let you know about support groups in your local area.The Parkinson's UK website also features all the latest news, publications and research updates, as well as an Being diagnosed with Parkinson's doesn't mean you have to stop working. Hide guide parts They can often be given less frequently than levodopa.They are often taken as a tablet, but are also available as a skin patch (rotigotine).Sometimes dopamine agonists are taken at the same time as levodopa, as this allows lower doses of levodopa to be used.Possible side effects of dopamine agonists include:Dopamine agonists can also cause hallucinations and increased confusion, so they need to be used with caution, particularly in elderly patients, who are more susceptible.For some people, dopamine agonists have been linked to the development of compulsive behaviours, especially at high doses, including addictive gambling and an excessively increased libido.Talk to your healthcare specialist if you think you may be experiencing these problems.As the person themselves may not realise the problem, it's key that carers and family members also note any abnormal behaviour and discuss it with an appropriate professional at the earliest opportunity.If you're prescribed a course of dopamine agonists, the initial dose is usually very small to prevent nausea and other side effects.The dosage is gradually increased over a few weeks.

Parkinson's UK: therapies and Parkinson's management. A person with Parkinson's disease can also experience a wide range of other physical and psychological symptoms.See a GP if you're concerned that you may have symptoms of Parkinson's disease.They'll ask about the problems you're experiencing and may refer you to a specialist for further tests.Parkinson's disease is caused by a loss of nerve cells in part of the brain called the substantia nigra. Participants in clinical trials sometimes do better overall than those in routine care.If you are asked if you want to take part in a trial, you will be given an information sheet about the trial.If you want to take part, you will be asked to sign a consent form.

See all parts of this guide Ask your local authority for a care and support needs assessment.A physiotherapist can work with you to relieve muscle stiffness and joint pain through movement (manipulation) and exercise.The physiotherapist aims to make moving easier, and improve your walking and flexibility.

The three main symptoms of Parkinson's disease are: involuntary shaking of particular parts of the body (tremor) slow movement.

Loss of Smell. This will help you maintain your independence for as long as possible.Many people with Parkinson's disease have swallowing difficulties (A speech and language therapist can often help you improve these problems by teaching speaking and swallowing exercises, or by providing assistive technology.For some people with Parkinson's disease, making dietary changes can help improve some symptoms.You may see a dietitian, a healthcare professional trained to give diet advice, if your care team thinks you may benefit from changing your diet.Medication can be used to improve the main symptoms of Parkinson's disease, such as shaking (tremors) and movement problems.However, not all the medications available are useful for everyone, and the short- and long-term effects of each are different.Your specialist can explain your medication options, including the risks associated with each medication, and discuss which may be best for you.