Anti-Parkinson drugs are medicines that relieve the symptoms of Parkinson's disease and other forms of parkinsonism. Anti-Parkinson drugs are of two types:
- Levodopa, which is used alone or in combination with carbidopa, restores dopamine levels in the brain. Carbidopa helps make levodopa more effective and reduces some of the side effects that occur when levodopa is taken by itself.
- Anti dyskinetics and anti cholinergics, such as benztropine and trihexyphenidyl, block the effects of other brain chemicals, thereby reducing some of the involuntary tremors.
- Other medicines, such as bromocriptine and pergolide, selegiline, and the antiviral drug amantadine, are also sometimes used alone or in combination with other Anti-Parkinson drugs to treat Parkinson's disease.
Consult your physician regularly, if you are takin Anti-Parkinson drugs. Periodic checking will help you stay away from unwanted side effects. This may also help the physician adjust the dosage if there is a need.
Anti-Parkinson drugs may add to the effects of alcohol and other drugs that slow down the central nervous system, such as antihistamines, cold medicine, allergy medicine, sleep aids, medicine for seizures, tranquilizers, some pain relievers, and muscle relaxants. Before taking Anti-Parkinson drugs inform your physician if you are taking any of the abovesaid drugs.
Anti-Parkinson drugs may interact with medicines used during surgery, dental procedures, or emergency treatment. These interactions could increase the chance of side effects. Anyone who is taking Anti-Parkinson drugs should be sure to tell the health care professional in charge before having any surgical or dental procedures or receiving emergency treatment. Some people feel drowsy, dizzy, or less alert when using these drugs. The drugs may also cause blurred vision. If youare taking Anti-Parkinson drugs, you should not drive, use machines or do anything else that might be dangerous.
People taking Anti-Parkinson drugs may sweat less, which can cause the body temperature to rise. Don't let your body overheated especially during exercise or hot weather as overheating could lead to heat stroke. Also avoid hot baths, hot tubs and saunas if you are taking Anti-Parkinson drugs. Diets high in protein may interfere with the effects of levodopa. Hence eat only moderate amounts of protein as prescribed by your physician.
The most common side effects are associated with the central nervous system, and include dizziness, lightheadedness, mood changes and hallucinations. Gastrointestinal problems, including nausea and vomiting, are also common among people who take Anti-Parkinson drugs.
Anti-Parkinson drugs may interact with other medicines. When this happens, the effects of one or both of the drugs may change or the risk of side effects may be greater. Before taking Anti-Parkinson drugs, let your physician know about all other drug you are taking including
- Anti cholinergics
- Central nervous system (CNS) depressants such as medicine for allergies, colds, hay fever, and asthma; sedatives; tranquilizers; pain medicine; muscle relaxants; medicine for seizures; sleep aids; barbiturates; and anesthetics
- Tricyclic antidepressants
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors
- Anti psychotic drugs
- Vitamin B6(pyridoxine)
- Anti seizure medicines
The list above does not include all the drugsthat may interact with Anti-Parkinson drugs. One has to be sure to check with a physician or pharmacist before combining Anti-Parkinson drugs with any other prescription or nonprescription medicine.