Group fosters awareness of Parkinson's disease
April 14, 2010

Accepting a proclamation from Missouri State Representative Charlie Denison is Mel Devries, founder of The Parkinson's Group of the Ozarks. Standing by is Patricia Auston, president of the group.

The Parkinson's Group of the Ozarks invites community members to participate in Parkinson's Awareness Month by attending an open house. It will take place from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Apr. 21, 2010, in the Catherine McAuley Conference Center at St. John's Hospital, Springfield. Springfield is joining millions of people around the world in recognizing the effects of Parkinson's disease thanks to a proclamation signed by State Representative Charlie Denison (R-135).

The program will include information about Parkinson's disease, refreshments, and entertainment by the Tremble Clefs, under the direction of Harry Beckett, a group of dedicated people with Parkinson's who come together for therapy, fellowship and a love of music.

Parkinson's disease is a movement disorder that is both chronic and progressive. It affects nearly one million Americans including many people living locally. Approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson's each year, and this number does not reflect the thousands of cases that go undetected. Approximately four million people worldwide are estimated to be living with this disease.

Incidence of Parkinson's increases with age, but an estimated four percent of people with PD are diagnosed before the age of 50. Unfortunately, the cause is still unknown, and presently, there is no cure.

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