Parkinson's disease is a serious, progressive disease of the nervous system, It usually strikes those past the age of fifty years, but it can strike earlier. Approximately 50,000 new Parkinson's disease cases are reported annually, with those numbers expected to increase each year as the American population ages. At least half a million American people are currently suffering from Parkinson's disease, a condition of which there is no known cure.
In prior Parkinson's disease studies, people who were NSAID users and other non-aspirin NSAID users (Aleve, Naprosyn, Tylenol) showed a reduced risk of developing Parkinson's disease. Those studies, however, did not discriminate between ibuprofen and other NAISDs.
The most recent study used data from almost 99,000 women and more than 37,000 men. During the six year follow-up study, there were 291 Parkinson's disease cases identified. Of these, 156 of them were men, and 135 of them were women. Based on informative questionnaires of the study subjects, their use of this drug was analyzed. It clearly showed a decreased risk of Parkinson's disease.
People who used this drug regularly, or two or more times per week, were noted to have about a 38% less chance of developing Parkinson's disease, than those who regularly used either aspirin or other NAISDs. Although the exact method of how this drug works to slow down the progression of Parkinson's disease remains unknown, researchers are hopeful that this drug could prove to be a valuable neuroprotective against the disease.
Parkinson's disease causes the loss of brain cells, which occurs for a decade or even longer. Researchers believe that ibuprofen may protect these brain cells, slowing the progression of this debilitating disease. Parkinson's disease researchers are hopeful that an inexpensive, easily obtained drug could be developed and made readily available to treat this disease.
Although these findings are certainly good news for those currently suffering from Parkinson's disease, researchers warn that Parkinson's disease patients should not begin taking this drug. It is a relatively safe over the counter medication, yet it can have side effects, such as gastrointestinal bleeding. It is not yet known if any side effects have any bearing on the slowing down of the progression of Parkinson's disease. More studies are needed, to determine the exact use and the exact amount of ibuprofen to have a delaying effect on the progression of Parkinson's disease. What is now known about the ability of ibuprofen to slow down Parkinson's disease does look promising. The anticipation that a cure for this dreaded disease could be a reality in the near future is very encouraging, especially to its many victims and their loved ones.