Research is under way at the Methodist Neurological Institute (NI) to determine which musical rhythms are more therapeutic for Parkinsonís disease patients.
Studies already have shown that music therapy can have a greater impact than physical therapy on Parkinsonís patients, but Dr. Ron Tintner, a neurologist at the Methodist NI, is studying the use of different rhythms to facilitate movement in people with the debilitating disease.
ďWe already know that rhythm can make people move. The question is, ĎAre there particular rhythms that work better for these patients?íĒ said Tintner, co-director of the Movement Disorders Clinic at the NI. Tintner is also a participating physician in Methodistís Center for Performing Arts Medicine program.
The first phase of this trial, supported by a grant from The GRAMMY Foundationģ Grants Program, will study a group of patients without Parkinsonís disease and determine what rhythms most stimulate them. Once determined, these rhythms will be tested on a group of Parkinsonís disease patients to determine their response.
ďOver the course of a year, we want to determine which acoustic stimuli will help Parkinsonís patients move and function better. Ultimately, the goal would be to create a device, perhaps similar to a personal music device that would be tailored to each Parkinsonís patientís needs,Ē he said.