Drug treatment is the main method used to control the symptoms of Parkinson's.
Parkinson's symptoms happen when levels of a chemical messenger in your brain, called dopamine, become too low.
Drug treatments aim to increase the level of dopamine that reaches the brain and stimulate the parts of the brain where dopamine works.
Treatments are specific to you
Drug treatment for Parkinson's is prescribed to suit the individual. Each person will react to their medication in different ways.
There are many different drugs prescribed for Parkinson's. None of them are perfect, but research into treatments is improving the options all the time.
Every person with Parkinson's has a different experience of the condition. Your GP, specialist or Parkinson's nurse will aim to find the treatment that is best for you as an individual.
Your drugs will be reviewed over time to make sure you receive the best combination for you as your condition progresses. See our information about treatments and therapies for advanced Parkinson's.
You may need to be careful if you take medication for other reasons. Your GP, specialist or Parkinson's nurse can advise on this.
For more information, see our Drug treatments for Parkinson's booklet or browse the pages below.
The main drug treatments for Parkinson's
These are the main types of drugs that are used to treat Parkinson's:
- Dopamine agonists
- Glutamate antagonist
- COMT inhibitors
- MAO-B inhibitors
You may also want to read about Parkinson's drugs and impulsive and compulsive behaviour.
We've made every effort to ensure that the information presented on this website is accurate at the time of updating.
Please remember that information about drugs may change. This website does not list all the uses and side effects associated with these drugs.
We advise you to speak to your GP, specialist or Parkinson's nurse about your individual healthcare.
Side effects of Parkinson's drugs
All prescribed drugs can have potential side effects, including those used to treat Parkinson's. Some things you think are symptoms of Parkinson's may actually be side effects of medication.
Find out more about side effects of Parkinson's drugs.