Sunday, June 28, 2020

Physical Activity May be Used to Treat or Delay Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease [PD] is a degenerative neurological disorder affecting approximately one million Americans. According to the Mayo Clinic, “Parkinson's disease is a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement. Symptoms start gradually, sometimes starting with a barely noticeable tremor in just one hand. Tremors are common, but the disorder also commonly causes stiffness or slowing of movement.” Further, according to the Clinic, "some research has shown that regular aerobic exercise might reduce the risk of Parkinson's disease.” Indeed, one study demonstrated that  physical activity may be used to treat or prevent Parkinson’s disease.

The study's purpose was to examine the effects of physical activity on PD, and to provide "theoretical guidance for the prevention and treatment of PD." For the analysis, the investigators interrogated four databases. The databases were PubMed, Springer, Elsevier, and Wiley database.

After categorizing risk factors and protective factors for PD, the investigators concluded that physical activities were among the protective factors. Those physical activities were "running, dancing, traditional Chinese martial arts, yoga, and weight training." Further, the investigators concluded that " Physical activity has a positive impact on the prevention and treatment of PD."

And according to WebMD, engaging in physical activity can be beneficial when it comes to PD. Physical activity can improve flexibility, balance, walking and hand strength. And physical activity can help with the control of tremors and uncontrolled movements.

Finally, one analysis concluded "that people living with Parkinson's disease can benefit from being physically active, especially when it comes to improving gait and balance, and reducing risks of falls."
And the investigators suggested that health providers should advise their patients with PD to engage in physical activity.

Indeed, physical activity should be a part of everyone's lifestyle. We know that physical activity, along with a healthy diet, and other healthy lifestyle activities, can improve the length and quality of all our lives. And improvement in PD is just another one of the specific ailments that physical activity might bring about.

Friday, June 26, 2020

Liraglutide as a Treatment for Overweight Individuals with and without Diabetes

Liraglutide was approved for type 2 diabetes treatment in 2010. And In 2014, liraglutide was approved for weight loss. Since most people with type 2 diabetes are also overweight or obese, it would seem that liraglutide would be a good candidate medication for treating those overweight or obese persons who don't have type 2 diabetes, and those overweight or obese persons who do have type 2 diabetes. One study has shown the efficacy of treating non-diabetic patients who are obese with liraglutide. And another study has shown the efficacy of treating type 2 diabetes patients who are overweight or obese with liraglutide.

To determine if liraglutide is a good medication for weight loss for persons who are obese, the investigators performed a meta-analysis to determine the efficacy and the safety of the drug for obese patients. In the analysis, five publications from such databases as EMBASE and Medline were studied. The investigators analyzed 4754 non-diabetic  obese patients by comparing the weight loss in a liraglutide group (2,996 participants) with the weight loss in a placebo group (1,758 particip0ants). The liraglutide group lost 5% more weight than the placebo group.

Therefore, the investigators concluded that "liraglutide [is] an effective and safe treatment for weight loss in...  obese, non-diabetic  individuals.”

Many individuals with type 2 diabetes are overweight. And some medications for treating diabetes, including insulin, can cause weight gain. So a study was done to determine if liraglutide can enable a patient to lose weight and also treat type 2 diabetes. The primary objective of the study was to determine if liraglutide (3.0 mg dose) was more effective in treating obese patients with type 2 diabetes than a placebo group.

The study was a randomized controlled study where the liraglutide 3.0 mg group consisted of 198 participants. The placebo group also consisted of 198 participants. All participants in the liraglutide group were subjected to intensive behavioral therapy (IBT).  And all study participants were being treated with basal insulin.

After 56 weeks, the investigators concluded that the liraglutide 3.0 mg group achieved a 5.8% average weight loss compared to 1.5% for the placebo group. The liraglutide 3.0 mg group also had “significantly greater reductions in mean HbA1c, mean daytime glucose values, and less need for insulin versus placebo…”

Based on the two studies above, it can be concluded that liraglutide is an effective medication for obese patients who are either diabetic or non-diabetic.

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