Is PD hereditary

Hello all,

My late father was diagnosed with PD in his late 50’s. He lived with it for around 16 years until he passed away last year.
Obviously it’s been in the back of my mind if it could be passed on but until recently I had no worries.
I now have sleep apnea, however I’m overweight so I put that symptom aside.
But just recently I’ve started some sort of REM behaviour disorder causing me to hit my wife in my sleep.
I remember my mum telling me my dad used to do this and it’s common amongst PD patients.
I’m 46 and not sure if I should contact my GP or not?

Welcome to the forum @Watchguy. I don’t know about your symptoms being regarded as a form of Parkinsons, I must confess I hit my wife one night but that was because I was having a bad dream. As for being hereditary I would say that it is despite being told by a Consultant that it isn’t, so I said to him, how do you explain that my brother being the eldest in the family and me the youngest have got the condition ?!!? I know of other friends who have had the disease and again someone else in their family has also had it so it must be. It may be worth chatting with your GP if only for your own peace of mind to confirm that you do have something but this will mean referring you to a Neurologist, it may take a while given how busy hospitals are with the pandemic. Sorry I can’t be of more help to you but may be there will be someone else come in and offer more advice. In the mean time take care and stay safe.


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Hi @Watchguy, :wave:

A warm welcome to the forum. :slightly_smiling_face:

It’s very rare for people to pass on Parkinson’s to their children.

It is estimated that only a very small number of people may have an increased risk of Parkinson’s linked to their genes. We have more information on this via the Parkinson’s UK website here: Does Parkinson's run in families? | Parkinson's UK

We also have a confidential helpline with a team of amazing advisers who would be more than happy to offer you support on this. Feel free to give us a call on our free number 0808 800 0303.

I hope you find this information helpful.

Best wishes,

Not heard of it running in families, but this would not surprise me - I know several famlies who have had MS in the family then, Parkinson’s or the other way round so have often wondered if these two are linked and can be passed on somehow.

Has anyone come across this.

I’m part of a genetic study - 23&me

My results on Parkinson’s say -

"Parkinson’s disease is associated with variants in many genes.

This report includes one variant in the LRRK2 gene and one variant in the GBA gene. This test does not cover variants in other genes associated with Parkinson’s disease."

(I do not have either of the genes they tested).

Hi, I’m not sure whether PD is hereditary or not (although my uncle had it). However, I too was hitting my wife in my sleep and was prescribed Clonazepam 0.5mg by my DBS professor when my wife mentioned it to him. I take 1 tablet just before bedtime which has resulted in me not hitting my wife anymore.
Hope that helps.

My dad had pd and now I have it I suspect there is a link and I have noticed others on the web with pd one parent had pd .Just a observation .

Hi @Watchguy

5-10% of PD cases have a genetic factor, a few are linked to environmental toxins and the rest are idiopathic (of unknown cause).

If onset is earlier than age 50 it’s more likely to be genetic.

It’s unlikely you have inherited PD but I would get checked out just in case.