Exercise produces potential influences on physical and mental capacity in patients with neuropsychiatric disorders, and can be made a viable form of therapy to treat Parkinson’s disease (PD). We report the chronic effects of a regular physical exercise protocol on cognitive and motor functions, functional capacity, and symptoms in an elderly PD patient without dementia. The patient participated of a program composed of proprioceptive, aerobic and flexibility exercises, during 1 hour, three days a week, for nine months. Patient used 600 mg of L-DOPA daily, and 1 hour prior to each exercise session. Assessment was conducted in three stages, 0-3, 3-6 and 6 to 9 months, using percentual variation to the scales Hoehn and Yahr, Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Parkinson Activity Scale (PAS), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS-III). Reassessment showed clear changes in clinical parameters for Hoehn and Yahr (4 to 2.5), MMSE (14 to 22), PAS (13 to 29), BDI (9 to 7) and UPDRS-III (39 to 27) at the end of 9 months. According to our data, exercise seems to be effective in promoting the functional capacity and the maintenance of cognitive and motor functions of PD patients. Regular exercise protocols can be implemented as an adjunctive treatment for reducing the severity of PD.

Keywords: Exercise, functional capacity, Parkinson’s disease, severity..
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