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Exercise/memory research for Parkinson's
Date:12/12/2011

e study. They will come in three times a week for their training for three months and will be then be tested again. Three months after that, the researchers will test the participants again to see if there may be longer term benefits to the training.

With both the treadmill walking and the memory game, the exercise or video game will become more challenging as the participant improves. The memory training works like a video game with players advancing to a higher level of difficulty. For the exercisers, trainers may increase the speed or slope of the treadmill to make it more aerobically challenging.

"This new study builds on our experience from a previous study of exercise for gait and mobility in Parkinson's disease. Since both motor function and cognitive function are important for mobility and performance of daily activities, this new study will investigate the individual and combined effects of treadmill training and cognitive training," explains Lisa Shulman, M.D., co-investigator and professor of neurology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

"Parkinson's patients are eager to know if there is anything they can do to give them greater control over their condition. Mobility and memory are the two key components to preserve independence. If these treatment strategies are found to be effective, we will learn important new approaches to delaying disability," says Dr. Shulman who is co-director of the Maryland Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders Center.

The treadmill training will take place at the Baltimore VA Medical Center in the Maryland Exercise and Robotics Center of Excellence, a gym facility with specialized equipment for people with physical limitations or balance issues. For safety, participants will wear a safety harness while walking on the treadmill. Experienced exercise physiologists will supervise each training session.

The computerized memory training game will take place both at t
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Contact: Sharon Boston
sboston@umm.edu
410-328-8919
University of Maryland Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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