April is Parkinson’s Awareness month! Ever wonder why? April 11th was James Parkinson’s birthday! He was a neurologist, geologist, scientist, and activist. He was born April 11, 1755, and died December 21, 1824. James Parkinson (1755–1824) worked as a general practitioner in the semi-urban hamlet of Hoxton, northeast of the City of London, where he had been born, and where he lived all his life.
We celebrate World Parkinson’s Day each year on his birthday, April 11, and we focus our attention on Parkinson’s awareness in April in honor of him and his discoveries.
In 1817, Parkinson published “An Essay on the Shaking Palsy.” The essay itself very carefully and accurately portrays Parkinson’s disease, which he called shaking palsy. He did not name the disorder after himself. Dr. Jean-Martin Charcot suggested that Parkinson’s name deserved to be linked to the disorder that he had so accurately described; thus, “Maladie de Parkinson” (Parkinson’s disease).
Would you help spread awareness with us? Creating awareness and advocacy comes in many forms. Sometimes it is a casual conversation with a store clerk about why you shake and need the change put into the bag instead of trying to handle it. It may be speaking to a class of nursing students about the effects of PD so that they are more aware of Parkinson’s when they ultimately encounter someone with this disease. It could be writing a letter to your local newspaper about Parkinson’s activities in your area.
“Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out.” – John Wooden