Parkinson Society Canada

Parkinson Society Canada

April 11, 2012 06:00 ET

World Parkinson's Day is April 11th

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 11, 2012) - Parkinson Society Canada invites Canadians to show their support for more than 100,000 people living with Parkinson's disease. World Parkinson's Day is celebrated annually on this day, April 11th, the birthday of Dr. James Parkinson, for whom the disease is named. Celebrations across Canada include the sale of fresh tulip, parliamentary proclamations and educational events.

On April 11, 2005, the Red Tulip was launched as the Worldwide Symbol of Parkinson's disease at the 9th World Parkinson's disease Day Conference in Luxembourg.

The day is dedicated to advocating for people with Parkinson's. World Parkinson's Day increases awareness of Parkinson's and is intended to spur new research and treatment initiatives. Parkinson Society Canada works to educate the public, particularly during the month of April, Parkinson Awareness Month, by hosting fundraising and awareness events and reaching out to Canadians with Parkinson's and the general public.

"We're here to support Canadians with Parkinson's. Each person's experience with this disease is unique," says Joyce Gordon, CEO Parkinson Society Canada. "From the initial diagnosis and through every step and challenge, we encourage everyone with Parkinson's to take action, find answers and stay informed. It's never too late for someone with Parkinson's to come to us."

Parkinson's is a chronic degenerative neurological disease caused by the loss of dopamine in the brain. There is no cure. Symptoms include: resting tremor, slowness of movement, stiffness or rigidity of muscles, difficulty with balance and walking, changes in voice volume and speech, and difficulty with fine movements. Non-motor symptoms include depression, loss of sense of smell, sleep disturbances and cognitive changes. The average age of onset is 60, but it can affect people as young as 20, 30 or 40.

Parkinson Society Canada, with 10 regional partners and 240 chapters and support groups, has been providing education, support, and advocacy on behalf of over 100,000 Canadians living with Parkinson's since 1965. Its research program is dedicated to improving the quality of life for Canadians living with Parkinson's, identifying causes and some day, a cure. To find out more about Parkinson's disease and services available near you, call 1-800-565-3000 or visit www.parkinson.ca.

In October 2013, Parkinson Society Canada will host the 3rd World Parkinson Congress in Montreal, Quebec. This is the only international gathering of its kind where scientists, people with Parkinson's and policy makers share their vision, passion, and scientific progress. For more information visit www.parkinson.ca/WPC2013.

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