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Treating Non-Motor Symptoms of Parkinson Disease

Erica Vitek, MOT, OTR, BCB-PMD, PRPC is the author and presenter of the new Parkinson Disease and Pelvic Rehabilitation course, and she is the co-author of the Neurologic Conditions and Pelvic Floor Rehab course. She is a certified LSVT (Lee Silverman) provider and faculty member, and is a trained PWR! (Parkinson’s Wellness Recovery) provider, both focusing on intensive, amplitude and neuroplasticity based exercise programs for people with Parkinson disease. Erica partners with the Wisconsin Parkinson Association (WPA) as a support group and event presenter as well as author in their publication, The Network. Erica has taken a special interest in the unique pelvic floor, bladder, bowel and sexual health issues experienced by individuals diagnosed with Parkinson disease.

Erica Vitek, MOT, OTR, BCB-PMD, PRPCParkinson disease is the second most common neurologic disorder. When most people think about people with Parkinson disease, they think about stooped posture, shuffling gait, slow and rigid movement, balance difficulties and tremoring. Often these motor symptoms are the main target of pharmacological treatments with neurologists and many experience positive functional gains. Non-motor symptoms, however, can be more disabling than the motor symptoms and have significant adverse effects on the quality of life in people with Parkinson disease.

The pharmacologic management of non-motor autonomic dysfunction, including urinary, bowel, and sexual health impairments, is often ineffective, not supported by adequate research, or causes intolerable side effects for people with Parkinson disease. In a recent article titled Update on Treatments for Nonmotor Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease – An Evidence-Based Medicine Review Seppi, K, et al., 2019, the authors state that “before attempting any [pharmacological] treatment for lower urinary tract symptoms, urinary tract infections, prostate disease in men, and pelvic floor disease in women should be ruled out.” It is rare to see a mention of pelvic floor within the literature that addresses helping people with Parkinson disease.

Pelvic rehabilitation specialists have a unique opportunity to step in and help these individuals improve their quality of life and many neurologists are unaware of the benefits our services could provide for their patients. Please join me in an exciting dive into understanding the physiology of how Parkinson disease affects a person’s pelvic health and develop your skills to effectively assess and develop treatment plans to change the life of these individuals.


Seppi, K., Ray Chaudhuri, K., Coelho, M., Fox, S. H., Katzenschlager, R., Perez Lloret, S., ... & Hametner, E. M. (2019). Update on treatments for nonmotor symptoms of Parkinson's disease—an evidence‐based medicine review. Movement Disorders, 34(2), 180-198

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Upcoming Continuing Education Courses

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Marietta, GA Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Southern Pelvic Health

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Self-Hosted

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Self-Hosted Course

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - West Hills, CA Satellite Course (SOLD OUT)

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Touch of Life PT

Osteoporosis Management - Remote Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Replacement Remote Course

Male Pelvic Floor - Self-Hosted

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Self-Hosted Course

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Little Rock, AR Satellite Course (SOLD OUT)

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Core Pelvic Physical Therapy

Sexual Medicine in Pelvic Rehab - Remote Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Replacement Remote Course

Male Pelvic Floor - Kenosha, WI Satellite Location

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Aurora Sports Health Pershing

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Baltimore, MD Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Sparks Physical Therapy

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Wichita, KS Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Novacare

Male Pelvic Floor - Irvine, CA Satellite Location (SOLD OUT)

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Core Pelvic Floor therapy

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Appleton, WI Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Orthopedic & Spine Therapy

Pediatric Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders - Remote Course (CANCELLED)

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Replacement Remote Course

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Manchester, NH Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Franklin Pierce University - New Hampshire

Male Pelvic Floor - New Orleans, LA Satellite Location

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Ochsner Therapy and Wellness/Ochsner Health System

Pelvic Floor Level 2B - Tullahoma, TN Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: TOP Rehab

Male Pelvic Floor - Omaha, NE Satellite Location

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Nebraska Medicine

Male Pelvic Floor - Virginia Beach, VA Satellite Location (CANCELED)

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Southeastern Physical Therapy

Male Pelvic Floor - Nottingham, MD Satellite Course

Nov 6, 2021 - Nov 7, 2021
Location: Kaiser Permanente Nottingham Rehabilitation Center

Fertility Considerations for the Pelvic Therapist - Remote Course

Nov 7, 2021
Location: Short Form Remote Course

Rehabilitative Ultrasound Imaging: Orthopedic Topics - Self-Hosted

Nov 12, 2021 - Nov 13, 2021
Location: Self-Hosted Course

Rehabilitative Ultrasound Imaging: Women's Health and Orthopedic Topics - Self-Hosted

Nov 12, 2021 - Nov 14, 2021
Location: Self-Hosted Course

Rehabilitative Ultrasound Imaging: Orthopedic Topics - Torrance, CA Satellite Location

Nov 12, 2021 - Nov 13, 2021
Location: Women's Advantage Inc

Athletes & Pelvic Rehabilitation - Remote Course

Nov 13, 2021 - Nov 14, 2021
Location: Replacement Remote Course

Manual Therapy for the Abdominal Wall - Remote Course

Nov 13, 2021
Location: Short Form Remote Course

Bowel Pathology and Function - Remote Course

Nov 13, 2021 - Nov 14, 2021
Location: Replacement Remote Course