1. A neurologic syndrome usually resulting from deficiency of the neurotransmitter dopamine as the consequence of degenerative, vascular, or inflammatory changes in the basal ganglia; characterized by rhythmic muscular tremors, rigidity of movement, festination, droopy posture, and masklike facies. SYN: Parkinson disease, shaking palsy, trembling palsy. 2. A syndrome similar to p. appearing as a side effect of certain antipsychotic drugs. [J. Parkinson]

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par·kin·son·ism 'pär-kən-sə-.niz-əm n
2) any of several neurological conditions that resemble Parkinson's disease and that result from a deficiency or blockage of dopamine caused by degenerative disease, drugs, or toxins

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a clinical picture characterized by tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement, and postural instability. The commonest symptom is tremor, which often affects one hand, spreading first to the leg on the same side and then to the other limbs. It is most pronounced in resting limbs, interfering with such actions as holding a cup. The patient has an expressionless face, an unmodulated voice, an increasing tendency to stoop, and a shuffling walk. Parkinsonism is a disease process affecting the basal ganglia of the brain and associated with a deficiency of the neurotransmitter dopamine. Sometimes a distinction is made between Parkinson's disease, a degenerative disorder associated with ageing, and parkinsonism due to other causes. For example, it may be induced by the long-term use of antipsychotic drugs and uncommonly it can be attributed to the late effects of encephalitis or coal-gas poisoning or to Wilson's disease. Relief of the symptoms may be obtained with anticholinergic drugs, dopamine-receptor agonists (see dopamine), levodopa, and subcutaneous apomorphine injections and infusions. New surgical treatments include stereotactic pallidotomy and pallidal stimulation. The latter procedure involves placing an electronic stimulator in the globus pallidus that can be controlled by an external switch or control panel.
J. Parkinson (1755-1824), British physician

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par·kin·son·ism (pahrґkin-sən-iz″əm) a group of neurological disorders characterized by hypokinesia, tremor, and muscular rigidity. See Parkinson disease, under disease, and parkinsonian syndrome, under syndrome.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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