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Parkinson’s disease: Colour vision, dry eyes and double vision could be early signs

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Parkinson’s disease is a progressive condition whereby the signals communicated between the brain and nervous system are disrupted. This causes a number of impairments, many of which relate to movement. The symptoms are often subtle at first but become quite pronounced as the condition advances. When this occurs, the eyes may be affected in a number of ways.

Vision issues in Parkinson’s can range from dry eyes and blurry vision to difficulty controlling eye movements, the inability to open eyelids, and increasing likelihood of hallucinations, said Parkinson’

The health site continued: “Parkinson’s disease can cause eye or eyelid problems, as can side effects of medications used to treat the disease.

“Sudden visual changes should be immediately reported to your doctor because, as with other Parkinson’s symptoms, most related symptoms take time to develop.”

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Colour vision

Some people with the condition may have difficulty telling the difference between some colours, according to the Parkinson’s charity.

It adds: “This problem may be worse for shades of blue/green.

“Your colour vision may improve with Parkinson’s medication.”

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Dry eyes

People with Parkinson’s may find they blink less often.

Blinking helps to clean the eyes by removing dust and dirt, so if you blink less often, these materials can build up, resulting in dry or sore eyes.

The charity notes: “Dry eyes can have other causes, so see your optometrist for advice. They may suggest you try artificial tears.

“These are available from pharmacies and may help reduce discomfort and dryness.”

Double vision

Double vision is when a person sees two images of a single object either some or all of the time.

The two images may appear on top of one another or side by side, or sometimes they may experience a mixture of both.

The charity says: “This is often caused by problems moving the eyes.”

It adds that some people with Parkinson’s experience “tracking”.

“This is when the eyes do not move smoothly across a line or from one object to another,” it explains, “for example moving across a page when reading, or up and down.

It’s not known why the loss of nerve cells associated with Parkinson’s disease occurs, although research is ongoing to identify potential causes.

Currently, it’s believed a combination of genetic changes and environmental factors may be responsible for the condition.

“It is estimated that only a very small number of people may have an increased risk of Parkinson’s linked to their genes,” explains Parkinson’s UK.

Certain dietary decisions have also been linked to an increased risk of Parkinson’s.

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