By Joel Havemann

"I'm flat on my again on a sofa that is too brief in a windowless room within the bureau. i cannot even take a seat at a working laptop or computer, less make a keyboard paintings. My legs and arms are shaking uncontrollably. even if i'm purely fifty three years outdated, i've got already been suffering from Parkinson's illness for seven years. And at once the disorder is winning." So starts off Joel Havemann's account of the insidious disorder that's Parkinson's. Into his personal tale, Havemann weaves available factors of ways Parkinson's disrupts the brain's circuitry, how signs are controlled via medicines and surgical procedure, and the way humans do something about the disease's mental demanding situations. The paperback variation brings the dialogue of treatments and study completely modern.

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Extra info for A Life Shaken: My Encounter with Parkinson's Disease

Sample text

It’s a scant three pounds of cells floating in four or five ounces of a briny fluid inside the skull. But just about everything we do, think, and feel depends on the brain’s working well. It collects our thoughts and our emotions. It regulates how fast our heart beats and how much sugar gets to our muscles. It remembers how to solve quadratic equations (if we’re lucky) and what we were doing the 31 32 A Life Shaken day Kennedy was shot (if we’re old enough). It controls our fingers when we thread a needle and our arms and legs when we do a somersault.

In short, we escaped from reality by plunging headlong into it. So it has been with me and Parkinson’s. ∞ Nine years after Dr. Reich’s diagnosis, as I write this, I have engaged the disease as an investigator, detective, and observer—not as a patient seeking information about his own condition. This has given me license to explore things that would otherwise be di≈cult. Delving into Parkinson’s has turned out to be like diving into the New Jersey surf in the spring: breathtakingly cold at first but, after the initial shock, bracing and rewarding.

You mean you don’t take the time,’’ she corrected me. ‘‘Everybody needs to have a little down time during the day. ’’ Sound advice, I’m sure. But I got home late enough as it was; if I indulged myself in a leisurely lunch hour, I wasn’t sure I’d ever get home in time to see my children while they were still awake. After thirty minutes of chitchat, my therapist summoned the tools of her trade. To the palm of my left hand she taped a small gizmo that measured clamminess—a clammy hand being a sign of agitation.

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