Parkinson disease (PD) is a disabling neurodegenerative disease for which current treatments are suboptimal. As exercise is generally safe, inexpensive, and associated with secondary benefits, interest in exercise as a treatment for the motor symptoms of the disease is increasing. In this issue of the journal, Shulman and colleagues1 offer compelling evidence that exercise can improve gait and fitness among individuals with PD. This research adds to the evidence regarding the value of interventions for PD beyond medications and surgery and offers an opportunity for patients to be active participants in their care.
Figure. Publications of randomized controlled trials of exercise and Parkinson disease, 1996-2011. Databased on a MEDLINE search of Parkinson disease, Parkinson, or Parkinson’s and exercise conducted on August 21, 2012. The search was restricted to randomized controlled trials using a standardized search strategy from the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions.2
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