Five Stages of Parkinson's Disease

One:  A person usually experiences mild symptoms, such as tremors or shaking in a limb. During this stage, friends and family can usually detect changes caused by Parkinson's, such as poor posture, loss of balance, and abnormal facial expressions.

Two: Symptoms are bilateral, affecting both limbs and both sides of the body. The person usually encounters problems walking or maintaining balance, and the inability to complete normal physical tasks becomes more apparent.

Three:  Symptoms can be rather severe including the inability to walk straight or to stand. There is a noticeable slowing of physical movements.

Four:  Severe symptoms of Parkinson's.  Walking may still occur, but it is often limited, and rigidity and bradykinesia -- a slowing of movement -- are often visible. During this stage, most patients are unable to complete day-to-day tasks, and usually cannot live on their own. The tremors or shakiness of the earlier stages of the disease, however, may lessen or become non-existent for unknown reasons during this time.

Five:  In the final stage, the person is usually unable to take care of himself or herself and may not be able to stand or walk.  A person at this stage usually requires constant one-on-one nursing care.