Parkinson’s Through the Looking Glass: Q&A with Artist Richard Herdegen

Rainbow of LifeRichard Herdegen of Meridian, ID, sees his creativity as a window of opportunity for life with Parkinson’s disease. Recently, one of his glass mosaics entitled, “Rainbow of Life” (pictured at left) was selected to appear in PDF’s 2016 Creativity and Parkinson’s Calendar for the month of July.

The retired software engineer has been creating art for decades, using glass as his primary medium. But he says that after his Parkinson’s diagnosis in 2011 at the age of 66, the activity became more than just a way to relax and find solace, it also became a way to fight his disease.

Learn more about how creativity impacts his life with Parkinson’s.

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Nurse Faculty Scholars to Join PDF Team at 4th World Parkinson Congress

wpc-savethedate-2016Are you planning to attend the 4th World Parkinson Congress (WPC) in Portland, OR? This global event brings together people with Parkinson’s, care partners, scientists and health professionals.

PDF will be there from Tuesday, September 20 through Friday September 23 with members of our team working to end Parkinson’s — leaders in research, health care and the patient community. We are excited that the PDF team includes 15 of our talented nurse educators — all Scholars from The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF.

Many of our nurse Scholars are presenting posters on their research to advance PD research and care. Here’s a quick snapshot of who is attending and the research they are presenting. A special congrats to those who received grants from the Edmond J. Safra Foundation to attend!

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Parkinson’s Doesn’t Discriminate

ppac_novak (1)By Dan Novak, Ph.D.

Parkinson’s disease doesn’t discriminate.

It affects the young sports heroes who are bigger than life. It affects the old as they reflect on a life well lived. And me — I got PD at 52.

I don’t know why I got it. But I know that we need answers. Medications help with stiffness, slowness and tremor. But they don’t stop the disease.

With your help, we can do better.

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PD SELF: Can Self-Efficacy Improve Life for the Newly Diagnosed?

thelen_gilBy Gil Thelen

How about that retired Philadelphia-area organizational development consultant? After his Parkinson’s disease (PD) diagnosis, he surprisingly (to himself) found the capacity to become an accomplished folk painter and soon-to-be-published poet.

Or the retired Richmond, VA, dentist who raises buckets of money for research programs of the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (PDF)? Or the light-up-the-room, former pediatric office manager from Denver, CO? Not to mention the research coordinator named Chi Chi. And finally, the wisecracking, not-so-retired former newspaper editor and college professor from Tampa, FL (me).

That’s a taste of the 20 people with PD and professionals who trained last month as facilitators for PD SELF, a pilot program of PDF. PD SELF (Parkinson’s Disease Self-Efficacy Learning Forum) “provides those newly diagnosed with PD with an in-depth understanding of PD and self-efficacy tools to manage it with confidence.” We are a cadre of ground troops convinced of this truth: “I didn’t choose PD, but I can choose how I respond to it.”

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PDF Volunteers Reflect on Ali’s Impact on Parkinson’s Cause

Kevin Mazur/ Muhammad Ali at PDF Gala, June 1, 1995/Getty Images).

The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (PDF) and members of the Parkinson’s community continue to mourn the loss of Muhammad Ali and celebrate his efforts to raise awareness of the disease.

In the days since his passing, many people in the community have shared reflections on his role as the first celebrity to live publicly with Parkinson’s. Below, hear from PDF volunteer leaders — members of our People with Parkinson’s Advisory Council —  as they share their reactions and insights.

(Credit: Kevin Mazur/ Muhammad Ali at PDF Gala, June 1, 1995/Getty Images)

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