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Parkinson’s Disease Words and Acronyms

By Michele Tagliati, Gary Guten, Jo Horne, Deborah W. Brooks

Part of Parkinson’s Disease For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Every condition, profession, sport, and what-have-you has its own vocabulary and its own acronyms. Parkinson’s disease (PD) is no different. The following list contains terms and abbreviations that are part of the Parkinson’s world:

  • akinesia: Inability to move spontaneously

  • ataxia: Impaired balance and coordination

  • bradykinesia: Slowed movement

  • carbidopa/levodopa: Medication to relieve PD symptoms

  • dopamine: Acts as one of the brain’s messengers to signal movement and maintain balance and coordination

  • dyskinesia: Abnormal involuntary movements

  • PD: Parkinson’s disease

  • PWP: Person (or people) with Parkinson’s disease

  • T.R.A.P.: Acronym for four primary PD symptoms:

    • Tremor: Shaking of limb (usually hand) while at rest

    • Rigidity: Muscle stiffness and resistance to movement

    • Akinesia/bradykinesia: see above

    • Postural instability: See ataxia above