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Technique could ease Parkinson's disease diagnosis

When a person is living with a chronic illness, everyday tasks may gradually become more difficult over time. The ability to work full time may also be something affected by health concerns. As individuals fall into this situation, they may consider applying for Social Security disability insurance. In order to receive the benefits, certain qualifications must be met, however.

Once a person is unable to maintain work in his or her current occupation or find work in another field, they meet one of the requirements for SSDI. However, there must also be clear medical documentation. Unfortunately, however, some illnesses are difficult to diagnose, which can prove to be a challenge for SSDI applicants.

A recent medical development could be helpful for those who are showing symptoms of Parkinson's disease. At this time, there isn't a standard clinical test to detect the condition in its early stages. Oftentimes, it's not until severe symptoms emerge that it's possible to make a medical judgment. Recently, however, medical researchers found that those who have Parkinson's disease have a specific protein in their skin. This revelation could change the way the condition is diagnosed.

Having a clear way to diagnose this neurodegenerative disease could speed up disability benefit claims. With better medical evidence available, there might be less room for claims to be denied when they are first submitted for review.

Doctors are anticipating a more definitive way to diagnose Parkinson's disease. One medical professional noted that finding a specific "biomarker" for the illness could help doctors detect the condition and suggest treatments earlier on. This, in turn, could help make life more comfortable for those living with Parkinson's disease.

Source: Medical News Today, "Parkinson's disease clue may lie just under the skin," Oct. 8, 2013

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