Home-based exercise for Parkinson’s disease

...does it improve balance and quality of life?

Parkinson’s disease is a chronic, progressive, neurodegenerative disorder. It is the fastest growing neurological disorder in the world; the number of people with Parkinson’s disease is projected to double from 6 million in 2015 to 12 million in 2040.

Physiotherapy interventions such as balance exercises, treadmill training, cueing and strength exercise have become an integral part of the management of Parkinson’s disease. High-quality systematic reviews and randomised controlled trials have shown that exercise improves mobility (gait speed, step length and walking capacity), balance and quality of life, while reducing falls.

Despite this wealth of evidence, questions remain about the optimal location, amount of supervision, mode of delivery (individual, group or both), intensity, duration and type of exercise required to maximise these benefits. Home-based prescribed exercise is of particular interest because the lower resourcing required might allow it to become one way that the healthcare system can cope with the growing population of people with Parkinson's disease.


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