People who are allergic to pets, dust, spores and chemicals are most at risk, researchers from the Mayo Clinic have found. The risk is greatest among people who suffer persistent allergic reactions, known as perennial allergic rhinitis, and those who suffer from both perennial and seasonal rhinitis, more commonly known as hay fever. But those who suffered only from hay fever were not at any greater risk, the scientists found.
They emphasised that rhinitis does not necessarily cause Parkinson's, but that there appears to be some association between the two.
And, sadly, sufferers won't get any help from doctors. A new report reveals that doctors have not been trained either to diagnose or treat allergies, even though the problem is now one of the most common in the West, affecting around one-third of the population to some extent.
(Sources: Neurology, 2006; 67: 494-6; The Review of Services for Allergy, from: www.dh.gov.uk/publications).