NWPF

News ArchivesRead News

Meal-induced falls in blood pressure in Parkinson's sufferers

Saturday April 06, 2013

University of Adelaide researchers are hoping to better understand why some sufferers of Parkinson's disease experience a marked reduction in blood pressure after they've eaten a meal. Read more at: http://medicalxpress.com/news/2013-04-meal-induced

medicalxpress.com - The condition - known as postprandial hypotension - can result in sufferers fainting soon after they've eaten, which increases their risk of injury. This is of particular concern for older patients, who are more likely to require hospitalisation after a fall.

A new study involving researchers and clinicians from the University of Adelaide and Royal Adelaide Hospital is investigating this problem in sufferers of Parkinson's disease.

Speaking in the lead up to World Parkinson's Day (Thursday 11 April), study leader Professor Karen Jones says it is still not well understood why many sufferers of Parkinson's experience such a major fall in blood pressure after eating.

"Postprandial hypotension is poorly understood by the medical profession, and there is low awareness of the condition among general practitioners and in the community. It is distinct from a fall in blood pressure that occurs with standing, and there is no effective treatment," says Professor Jones, from the University of Adelaide's School of Medicine and the Royal Adelaide Hospital's Endocrine and Metabolic Unit.

"The research we're conducting will help us better understand the mechanisms involved in postprandial hypotension, so we hope it will be of great benefit to sufferers of Parkinson's and other diseases that are complicated by this problem."

The study is being conducted by School of Medicine PhD student Laurence Trahair, who is specifically looking at the relationship between gastric emptying and blood pressure.

"How quickly the stomach empties food into the intestine, and the changes this produces in intestinal blood flow, may be the key to better understanding why marked falls in blood pressure after a meal occur in these patients," Mr Trahair says.

"Abnormal rates of gastric emptying - either too fast or too slow - can be triggered by a range of causes, including medication commonly used to treat Parkinson's disease, so a better understanding of the rate of gastric emptying in these patients will be important for this study.

"Up to 50% of Parkinson's sufferers are believed to experience postprandial hypotension, so our research could potentially help a large number of people."

Recent News

Jul 24 - Parkinson's: Mutant gene interaction may pave the way for new treatments
Jul 22 - Boxing training used to fight against Parkinson's disease
Jul 17 - Stem cell treatment breakthrough could cure Parkinson’s patients
Jul 14 - Cancer drug shows early promise for Parkinson's disease
Jul 13 - Opinion: Dividing the Caregiving Responsibilities Between Siblings
Jul 12 - Researchers make advance in possible treatments for Gaucher, Parkinson’s diseases
Jul 11 - Parkinson’s Head Trauma Link Looks Even Stronger
Jul 7 - Penn students’ start-up XEED puts wearables to work against Parkinson’s disease
Jul 5 - Last Patient Enrolled in Pivotal Phase 3 Parkinson’s Disease Trial, Cynapsus Therapeutics Says
Jun 29 - Exoskeleton Could Quell the Tremors of Parkinson's Disease Patients at Crucial Moments
Jun 28 - Parkinson's disease: New protein discovery could fuel new treatments
Jun 27 - Study finds direct evidence linking Parkinson’s to autoimmune disease; 2 genes that are key regulators of immune system discovered
Jun 27 - Blocking key enzyme halts parkinson's disease symptoms in mice
Jun 23 - Parkinson's Research Might Benefit from Novel Discovery of Zinc Transport Protein Structure
Jun 23 - Parkinson's disease breakthrough 'could lead to cure'
Jun 20 - More American men diagnosed with Parkinson's
Jun 15 - First monkey genetically engineered to have Parkinson’s created
Jun 14 - Fighting Parkinson's in the lab
Jun 9 - A New Gene Has Been Linked to Parkinson's Disease
Jun 6 - A neurologist weighs in on Muhammad Ali's battle with Parkinson's disease