Are Jews at Risk for Parkinson’s Disease?
by Leonard Sokol
March 20, 2017
…Parkinson’s is so stigmatized among her fellow Haredi Jews that she forgoes the use of the word disease altogether. “Parkinson’s is very isolating, and is usually viewed as a death sentence in this Haredi community,” Levine said. “Some people would prefer to receive a diagnosis of late-stage cancer. Rabbis in the community are anxious to change that—and they know this is wrong. Because of the stigma, these patients remain at home and quickly turn into invalids.” Along with her friends, she is trying to reverse the tide through her backing of nascent support groups, such as Tikvah for Parkinson’s, that strive to educate families about the prognosis of the disease, what studies are ongoing for mutation carriers, and provide activities that promote exercise and psychological well-being. READ MORE