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CME: Parkinson's disease: optimizing pharmacotherapeutic management strategies


Activity Description / Statement of Need:

In this online, self-learning activity:

Parkinson’s disease (PD), a central nervous system disease of the autonomic and basal ganglia, neocortex, and spinal cord, is thought to affect about one million people in the United States. Its etiology is thought to include a confluence of factors including age, genetic predisposition, comorbid disease states (e.g., Gaucher’s disease), and environmental factor dynamics. Present in 1% of people over age 65 and 2.5% of those older than 80, its symptoms are the direct result of dopaminergic neuronal degradation along the nigrostriatal tract and include bradykinesia, resting tremor, muscle rigidity, and gait disturbance.

Target Audience:

The following healthcare professionals: neurologists and primary care physicians; physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, and pharmacists who practice in neurology; and any other healthcare professionals with an interest in or who clinically encounter patients with PD.

This program is supported by an educational grant from Acorda.

Release Date: March 27, 2018 -- Expiration Date: March 27, 2020

Faculty: Natalie Diaz, MD


Faculty introduction, disclosures

Introduction content: cursory refresher and review of PD

  • Epidemiology: statistics by severity
  • Clinical features, presentation (motor symptoms), pathophysiology, risk factors (e.g., Gaucher’s disease, differential diagnosis and disease progression
  • Patient case(s)

Treatment of PD

  • Clinical trial findings and evidence update
  • Present pharmacotherapy
  • Treatment-refractory disease and complications
  • Management of motor fluctuations and dyskinesia
  • Management of related casualties of disease: psychosis, depression, mood disturbances, dementia, sleep disturbance, sensory derangement, impaired cognition, and autonomic defects
  • Other clinical pearls
  • A distinction between disease progression and adherence to therapy
  • Emerging and future therapies
  • Barriers to care: optimizing patients’ adherence to their therapy and minimizing adverse effects
  • Patient case(s)

Learning Objectives

By the end of the session the participant will be able to:

  • Describe the epidemiology of PD and outline current and evolving diagnostic criteria
  • Describe the challenges associated with the diagnosis of PD
  • Identify the treatment modalities currently available for management of PD and its complications and apply them to patient cases using evidence-based medicine
  • List emerging pharmacologic therapies for the treatment of PD
  • Describe the impact of medication adherence on patient outcomes and formulate strategies to improve adherence in patients with PD


ACCME Activity #201226438


Faculty Disclosure and Resolution of COI

As a provider of continuing medical education, it is the policy of ScientiaCME to ensure balance, independence, objectivity, and scientific rigor in all of its educational activities. In accordance with this policy, faculty and educational planners must disclose any significant relationships with commercial interests whose products or devices may be mentioned in faculty presentations, and any relationships with the commercial supporter of the activity. The intent of this disclosure is to provide the intended audience with information on which they can make their own judgments. Additionally, in the event a conflict of interest (COI) does exist, it is the policy of ScientiaCME to ensure that the COI is resolved in order to ensure the integrity of the CME activity. For this CME activity, any COI has been resolved thru content review ScientiaCME.


Faculty Disclosures:


Dr. Natalie Diaz, MD, Associate Professor in Neurology, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, has received research support from Pfizer, Civitas, Chelsea, Adamas, SK Life.



Disclosures of Educational Planners: Charles Turck, PharmD has no relevant conflicts of interest to disclose.


Commercial Support Disclosure: This program is supported by an educational grant from Acorda


  • Read the learning objectives above
  • Take the Pre-Test (optional). Completion of the pre-test will help us evaluate the knowledge gained by participating in this CME activity.
  • View the online activity. You may view this is in more than one session, and may pause or repeat any portion of the presentation if you need to.
  • Minimum participation threshold: Take the post-test. A score of 70% or higher is required to pass and proceed to the activity evaluation.
  • Complete the activity evaluation and CME registration. A CE certificate will be emailed to you immediately.

Cultural/Linguistic Competence & Health Disparities

System Requirements

Windows 7 or above
Internet Explorer 8
*Adobe Acrobat Reader
Mac OS 10.2.8
Safari or Chrome or Firefox
*Adobe Acrobat Reader
Internet Explorer is not supported on the Macintosh

*Required to view Printable PDF Version

Perform Pre-Test (optional)

Please take a few minutes to participate in the optional pre-test. It will help us measure the knowledge gained by participating in this activity.

Additional Courses That Are Related To This Activity

Parkinson's disease: Highlights from the American Academy of Neurology 2017 Annual Meeting (AAN 2017)

Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP): therapeutic updates, best practices, and emerging therapies

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Its Complications: Highlights from the American Academy of Neurology 2016 Annual Meeting (AAN 2016) : Take-Aways, Emerging Practice Changes, and Barriers to their Implementation