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If it’s not genetic, what is it?

My work history is quite varied. Even though my dad was diagnosed with PD, my sisters don’t have it but I do. Putting genetics aside for a moment., I have a wide and wild career history.
It dates back probably 40+ years of unseen things I came in contact with. Early on, it was industrial chemicals for cleaning. ( nasty stuff) I was replacing shoes and work pants every 2-3 weeks due to acid contact. Forget about what I was inhaling. Next up was military microwave communication. You know, those big 70 ft satellite dishes. I worked on the converter units taking standard communication signals and bumping them up to 70gHz. ( think microwave oven to the stars in space) then, military microwave jamming technology. ( all back in the 70’s. ) no secrets here. Then down to Texas to drill oil. Field hazards abound. Then the last go around , GPS. I did that for almost 30 years. The clock started ticking on that as of Jan 1st week, 1980. I jumped in in 1983. The receivers are low power, strictly receive. But I was around them all the time. My first receiver was the size of a small refrigerator. My gps career brought me into places, few humans would go. ( another story) but as I said, could any or all of these things have affected my PD development or is it genetic? Still a mystery.
Any similar work histories to compare?

  1. Hi again Jeff t,
    Yes you pose some interesting questions about the origins of PD. My own 86 year old father with PD worked as a dentist for about 45 years. He doesn't know of any genetic link. In my father's life he worked with various compounds in the dental lab that could very well have contributed to his PD. He also had a very large vegetable garden that he might have come in contact with sprays used for gardens. I attached an article done by our staff that may give you more insight into the origins of PD. https://parkinsonsdisease.net/basics/genetics
    Best regards, Suzanne Troy, ParkinsonsDisease.net

    1. Hi Suzanne: now that you mention it , I’ve had a few gardens in my short life (67)and did expose myself to some garden chemicals over the years. I also had the good fortune (kidding) of dealing with fire ants In Texas for 11 years. Plenty of chemicals there as well. Plus while in Texas using GPS for land surveying for the highway dept., found myself on many roads and highways where weed killer was used on the sides of the road. Good call on the chemical aspect.
      Take care

      1. We can only pray for our next generation that they find alternative healthy ways to kills weeds and get rid of nasty bugs! Blessings on your day Jeff t- Take care, Suzanne Troy

    2. In addition, I tend to think that the triggers for PD in genes might be cumulative. My last career change before retiring, was as a teacher for 7 years in a therapeutic high school. Very stressful. This is where I first experienced the finger twitch ( now tremors in left arm, hand and leg). I also developed loss of smell and taste. So now with food it’s about texture and memory. Too bad, I love to cook.
      Take care.

      1. I think our immune system is very susceptible to triggers in our environment and from our genetic makeup. My mother has a number of immune related diseases involving diabetes, platelet disorder and clotting issues...thankfully we live in Chicago area where both my parents have access to top doctors. My own father (with PD) loves to bake but is not able to do so anymore at 86 and not much ability to follow recipes. He and I enjoy baking together now! We still share memories together in baking together! Finding positive in Parkinsons!
        Take care, Suzanne

    3. Hello Suzanne: I’m glad you get to spend time with your dad. I always enjoyed working with elderly folks. My mom was a night supervisor in nursing homes and when I was in high school I got a job in the kitchen delivering trays of food. For me it was about the stories the residents would tell. I spent time helping my dad before he passed. It was here I learned about the effects of PD, dementia, and Alzheimer’s. The care my mom gave was the best. It rubbed off on my son who is an administrator of two homes in ny. We’ll have a beautiful day and keep baking and keep the stories alive.

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