KARACHI- President, Neurology Awareness & Research Foundation (NARF), Prof Dr Muhammad Wasay revealed that population of older than 50 years in the world is 1.5 billion, of which 10-15 percent is suffering from neurological diseases.
Speaking at the CD launching ceremony containing 13 lectures by top health experts about Parkinson’s’ diseases in a local hotel, Prof Wasay said there are no absolute figures of Parkinson’s prevalence in Pakistan but according to estimates it is around one million.
Founder, World Parkinson’s Program, Canada, Dr Abdul Qayyum Rana, President Movement Disorders Society Pakistan (MDSP), Dr Nadir Ali Syed, Dr Syed Asad Abbas and Dr Abdul Malik, representative of Pakistan Parkinson’s Society Muhammad Irshad Jan were also present.
Prof Wasay said neurological society will soon launch a countrywide mental health survey to ascertain actual number of patients and devise a strategy to address this population to ensure their well-being and healthy living.
He old that most of neurologists have patients older than 50 years of age and find most of them suffering from Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. MDSP has already issued guidelines about Parkinson’s disease and now creating public awareness on it.
He explained that there is no special treatment or management arrangement for Parkinson’s patients in government run health facilities but we are expecting that government will soon launch a program to cater to health needs of elderly people.
Dr Abdul Qayyum Rana said that there was a perception that Parkinson’s is a disease of elderly people but now more than 10 percent of patients are under the age of 50 years. Symptoms of Parkinson disease include depression, difficulty to recall memory, less control on urination, constipation, etc. People ignore such symptoms relating it with older age and for this awareness is very necessary, he added.
He said that they are providing free medicines for Parkinson’s patients through neurologists in Pakistan and they have also published its awareness material in urdu language.
Dr Nadir Ali Syed said that his society is working to train and enhance skills of 1000 general practitioners for timely diagnosis and management of neurological diseases in the country.
Dr. Abdul Malik stressed the need to create awareness among masses for prevention of diseases to improve health and quality of life.