A survey commissioned by Parkinson’s UK has found that a quarter of people living with Parkinson’s were initially misdiagnosed with a different condition, from stroke to anxiety. 

The survey of over 2,000 people living with Parkinson’s found that 26% of people were initially wrongly diagnosed with a different condition, whilst 21% were only referred to a specialist after 3 or more trips to the GP. Of those misdiagnosed, over a third were prescribed a medication for the illness they did not have, and 10% were given an unnecessary procedure or operation.

Parkinson’s is a highly complex condition affecting each person individually, and as such is challenging to diagnose. However, the numbers of people with Parkinson’s are rising with an estimated incidence of 18,000+ new cases every year, and over 145,000 people living with the condition in the UK (PUK 2018 data). 

Earlier diagnosis means an opportunity to effectively manage and slow progression of the disease, and with the survey sharing that people are more commonly misdiagnosed in the 51-60 age bracket, before they are likely to be referred to a geriatrician, perhaps we need to share information from our Parkinson’s MasterClass with colleagues in general practice and neurology to help people with Parkinson’s in getting a swift diagnosis and early treatment.

Find out more via the Guardian’s 30th Dec 2019 article


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