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Billy Connolly says he can't use his left hand due to Parkinson's

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After receiving lifetime achievement award at The Edinburgh TV Festival, the Scotsman – affectionately known as the Big Yin – opened up about his deteriorating health. “The challenges lately have been medical,” said Sir Connolly. “They’re getting worse.” The 79-year-old continued: “You’ll notice I’ve been holding my left hand – it’s starting to jump around. I have to weigh it up and see how bad it gets.”

In an earlier BBC documentary, Made in Scotland, adderall bipolar Sir Connolly said: “I don’t have the balance I used to have, I don’t have the energy I used to have.”

Parkinson’s UK, a leading charity, described Sir Connolly’s disease as a “progressive neurological condition”.

Parkinson’s disease is the “fastest growing neurological condition in the world”.

The charity explained: “People with Parkinson’s don’t have enough of the chemical dopamine because some of the nerve cells that make it have died.”

There are three main symptoms of Parkinson’s, which are:

  • Tremor
  • Slowness of movement
  • Rigidity.

How Parkinson’s disease progresses over time

The condition affects everyone differently, meaning how quickly the condition develops will differ from one person to the next.

“For many people, the condition can take years to progress to a point where it has a real impact on daily life,” Parkinson’s UK noted.

Motor symptoms

Symptoms that affect movement are known as motor symptom; examples include: tremor, stiffness, and slowness of movement.

Other symptoms might include falls, dizziness, muscle cramps, freezing and dystonia.

Expanding on the term “freezing”, this means the affected person is randomly unable to move forward for several seconds or minutes.

People have described the sensation as feeling as though their feet are glued to the ground.

Freezing can be more noticeable when starting to walk, or when trying to turn around.

Furthermore, freezing may also feel like the lower half is stuck while the top half of the body is still functioning.

Dystonia, another symptom of Parkinson’s, involves tight, stiff and painful muscles.

The charity elaborated: “Dystonia is a movement disorder that happens when incorrect brain signals cause contractions in various muscles.

“This is when muscles become tighter and shorter than normal, making them stiff. Dystonia can feel painful and uncomfortable.”

Non-motor symptoms

There can be a wide array of non-motor symptoms, such as:

  • Pain
  • Fatigue
  • Low blood pressure
  • Restless legs
  • Bladder and bowel problems
  • Skin and sweating
  • Sleep
  • Eating, swallowing and saliva control
  • Speech and communication issues
  • Eye problems.

Mental health issues can also arise from Parkinson’s disease, such as anxiety, depression, hallucinations, and delusions.

Treatment for Parkinson’s involves mediation to help alleviate symptoms of the condition.

Billy Connolly: My Absolute Pleasure will air on ITV, 9.30pm on Sunday, December 26.

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