Very early days - should I do anything?

Hello. I’m Tim, I’m 76, I’m generally very fit for my age and I suspect I may have Parkinson’s.

My eldest brother died with Parkinson’s 12 years ago and another brother was diagnosed 2 years ago. For around the last year I have been sometimes experiencing minor tremors in my left arm when holding light weights such as a dinner plate. I’ve also been feeling tired a lot of the time and I get unnecessarily anxious about all sorts of things.

With my symptoms being minor, I struggle to see what benefit there would be in speaking to my GP. I read elsewhere on this site that “The most important thing to do if you’re worried you have Parkinson’s is to speak to your GP.” But I don’t see what good that would do. Parkinson’s can’t be cured, so what benefit is there in being diagnosed? It’s not causing me any significant problems, so there’s nothing really to treat.

I certainly don’t want to start taking any drugs when they’re not going to slow down any further onset of Parkinson’s. I prefer to just keep with a reasonably healthy diet and exercise. Neither do I want to take drugs that may just mask worsening symptoms when the symptoms aren’t much of a problem at the moment.

What I’d like to know is whether or not I’m right to just look after my general health for now, whilst keeping an eye on things until I need some help controlling any symptoms that may (or may not) get bothersome.

Hi Tim, we can see why you might be suspecting that you have Parkinson’s and we can fully understand everything that you have said, Maybe you have already talked yourself out of talking to your GP and that’s just fine if that’s what you prefer. One thing we can say is that you are in the right place and you are not alone. Let us take a moment to welcome you to our forum community. It’s a lovely group of people who always have some wisdom to share, some of whom are bound to introduce themselves soon. We’d also like to make sure you’re aware of the resources we provide, along with the forum. We have a website with research, articles, and archived forum threads, here: If you do decide not to talk with your GP then you might prefer to call our free and confidential helpline staffed with advisers who can advise with lots of different issues. You can reach them at 0808 800 0303, so please do reach out if you have any questions unaddressed here.
All our best,
Forum Moderator

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Hello TimC and welcome to the forum
JemE has given some good advice that you may choose to follow up.
I can quite understand why you suspect you have Parkinson’s given your family history and your thinking there is no point in going to your GP at the moment and why.
You ask if you are right. Well as far as I am concerned if it feels like the right thing to do to you, then it is right. As I and many others have said on the forum many times, there is not a right or wrong way to manage Parkinson’s, only the way that is right for you. Even if it turns out not to be Parkinson’s, I wouldn’t see it as wrong that you didn’t immediately go to your GP; you would go when it feels like the right time for you.
When my symptoms began to make me think I may have Parkinson’s (it’s not in my family as far as I am aware) like you, they weren’t causing me any significant problems. I also knew that they would be unlikely to start me on medication until such time as my symptoms were beginning to have a significant impact on my life - so I did what you are considering and did not immediately go to my GP. I actually went a few months later when a particular incident told me it was time to find out what was going on.
As you are probably aware, there is no specific test for Parkinson’s, but when I first saw my consultant I was presenting with enough clinical signs that he was able to diagnose Parkinson’s at my first appointment, which was followed up with confirmatory scans etc. I was given a prescription for medication that day and started taking it a few days later once the prescription had been filled.
I have never regretted managing those pre diagnosis days in the way that I did, it suited me and pretty much reflects my attitude to managing my Parkinson’s now. With a diagnosis like Parkinson’s it can feel that you have no control over your life and the future looks like one black hole - even in your shoes where your suspicions are given credence because of your family history, your actual reaction if it is Parkinson’s may be different to what you think it will be. However the reality is not quite the same and the way you manage your symptoms largely remains with you - your consultant can advise, you can discuss options, etc etc but you are the one living with the condition and if you choose not to follow up that advice at that point, then your medical team should respect that. As far as I am concerned, making the choice about when to go to your GP is the first decision that has to be made whenever you become ill or develop unexpected symptoms. I don’t see why that shouldn’t hold true just because you suspect Parkinson’s.
I hope this will help you make a decision on what you choose to do at the moment. As I said there is no right or wrong way, only the way that feels right to you. In this post I have written about what I did, my thinking about it because that’s what feels right to me. It may not be your way of thinking at the end of the day but hopefully it will give you the confidence to be honest and comfortable with whatever decision you may ultimately make.
Best wishes


Hi if you think you have Parkinson’s and you drive you will need to confirm this with your GP then follow this up with the DVLA assessment just a bit of paper work and they will speak to your gp but as for medication no one can dictate to you what to take. I was dx,ed at 39 now at 56 still going dad and his sister both dx,ed after me so it can run in families but normally does not

Hi Tim,

Sorry for taking so long to reply. I’ve only just seen this post. I am new to the online PD community, and to having PD symptoms. I’m 23 and I am in a similar position to you, but my symptoms are moderately worse.

Unfortunately for me, I have Parkinson’s that seems to run in the family (my maternal grandmother had it since her 20’s. I don’t know what her exact age was when she first had onset of symptoms, but I can speak to my auntie who knows more about her (my grandmother died when I was about 7).

Now I’m in my early 20’s, PD has already made itself known to me since I was 22 when I got my first symptom. I’ve always been aware of the disease since I was little that this may come to haunt someone in my family. All we can do is try and hope we won’t get it, but life happens as they say.

It is interesting that I seem to be the most like my mother and I am the only brother out of 3 of my mother’s children that seem to be affected. But I digress.

I hope everything goes well for you, and I hope things don’t get any worse for you as it’s a truly horrid disease.

Best wishes,