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  • Physical Therapists
  • Physical Therapist Assistants
Hours: 4 Contact Hours
Author(s): Deborah Kegelmeyer, DPT, MS, GCS
Peer Reviewer(s): Tamara R. DeAngelis, PT, DPT, GCS
Item#: Q3533
Contents: 1 Course Book (66 pages)
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Examination and Management of the Client With Parkinson's Disease, 2nd Edition

Price $39.95
Item # Q3533
When available, the Online Course format is included with the hard copy, eBook, or audio book formats!

Release Date: October 11, 2017

Expiration Date: October 11, 2020

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most prevalent neurodegenerative disorder (after Alzheimer’s disease), impacting approximately 1 million individuals in the United States, with 60,000 new cases diagnosed each year. Many physical therapists (PTs) enter the field with a broad understanding of neurologic rehabilitation, but lack specific training in the differential diagnosis, examination, and management of clients with Parkinson’s disease. Current research in the physical therapy management of individuals with Parkinson’s disease is quite robust, resulting in an ever-changing field of practice in response to new research findings. Therapists might lack information regarding the most valid diagnostic tests and measures, and the most current evidence-based treatment techniques. Recent studies have developed new assessment techniques such as the Balance Evaluation Systems Test (BESTest) and shorter versions called the Mini-BESTest, as well as the Brief-BESTest. Although it has been well established that physical therapy is beneficial for people with PD, evidence on best treatments is still growing.                                                    

This Intermediate course is designed to provide physical therapists and physical therapist assistants with the information needed to appropriately examine and treat the client with PD, including differential diagnosis of individuals who exhibit signs and symptoms indicative of PD. In addition, the learner will be able to manage clients with PD by designing a comprehensive treatment program based on the use of appropriate outcome measures. Equipped with the most current evidence, the learner will be able to discuss and critically evaluate interventions directed at the specific body structure and function, activity, and participation deficits associated with PD.

California PTs & PTAs - Approved by the Physical Therapy Board of California through Net Education Design, Inc., an agency recognized by the board to approved courses that meet Physical Therapy Regulations 1399.96.

Texas PTs & PTAs - This activity is provided by the Texas Board of Physical Therapy Examiners Accredited Provider #1911021TX and meets continuing competence requirements for PT & PTA license renewal in Texas.

Ohio PTs & PTAs - Approval #18S7392 (6/12/18 to 6/12/19)

Florida & Indiana PTs & PTAs – PT boards in your state accept this course based on pre-approval by the Ohio PT Association.

New Jersey PTs & PTAs - Approval #1808-98 2/1/18 - 1/31/20)

Course Objectives

  • Describe the etiology and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, including its four cardinal signs.
  • Describe the clinical course of Parkinson’s disease, its classification, and differential diagnosis of Parkinsonian syndromes.
  • Describe the medical management of Parkinson’s disease.
  • Determine the optimal examination procedure, given the client’s individual presentation and current best evidence.
  • Compare and contrast current best physical therapy interventions for the management of the client with Parkinson’s disease.


Deborah Kegelmeyer, DPT, MS, GCS, is a certified geriatric clinical specialist with more than 20 years of clinical experience. She is currently professor of clinical Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at Ohio State University, from which she graduated summa cum laude in 1983 with a bachelor of science degree in physical therapy and in 1990 with a master of science degree in allied medicine. She went on to pursue a doctorate in physical therapy from the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions in 2004. She founded the first group exercise program in Franklin County, Ohio, for individuals with Parkinson’s disease in 1988 and has remained active in local Parkinson’s support and exercise groups. She served as Chair of the PD EDGE taskforce for the Neurology Section of the American Physical Therapy Association, creating recommendations for universal outcome measures for use in Parkinson’s disease.

Dr. Kegelmeyer studies mobility and fall prevention in the elderly and those with neurodegenerative disease and works as a consultant in the Movement Disorders Clinic at Wexner Medical Center. She has written extensively, including several journal articles related to Parkinson’s disease, including “Reliability and Validity of the Tinetti Mobility Test for Individuals with Parkinson Disease” and “Assistive Devices Alter Gait Patterns in Parkinson Disease: Advantages of the Four-Wheeled Walker.”


Tamara R. DeAngelis, PT, DPT, GCS, is a senior physical therapist at the Center for Neurorehabilitation at Boston University. Since 2006, she has been providing clinical care and participating in research and educational activities to persons with Parkinson’s disease and related movement disorders. Dr. DeAngelis is also the coordinator for the American Parkinson Disease Association National Resource Center for Rehabilitation at BU, providing information and resources on exercise and rehabilitation to patients, families, and healthcare providers around the country. She speaks at Parkinson’s disease support groups, professional conferences, and symposia about the benefits of rehabilitation for persons with Parkinson’s disease. Dr. DeAngelis received a bachelor of arts degree in biology from Lafayette College, a master of science degree in physical therapy from Boston University College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College, and a doctorate in physical therapy from Temple University in 2010. She is also a board-certified specialist in geriatric physical therapy and is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association.

  • Courses must be completed on or before the expiration date noted in the course description above.
  • You must score 75% or higher on the final exam and complete the course evaluation to pass this course and receive a certificate of completion.
  • Through our review processes, Western Schools ensures that the course content is presented in a balanced, unbiased manner and is free from commercial influence. It is Western Schools’ policy not to accept commercial support.
  • All persons involved in the planning and development of this course have disclosed no relevant financial relationships or other conflicts of interest related to the course content.
  • There are no prerequisites for this course.