• Share
  • Sign up for Updates

FOR CARERS: CARING FOR YOURSELF

When your loved one starts Duopa treatment for their advanced Parkinson’s, it will be a new experience for both of you.

 

What role can you play as a carer?

When you’re caring for someone with Parkinson’s, you help out with many day-to-day needs as well as providing an immeasurable amount of patience and emotional support. The addition of the Duopa pump in the lives of both of you may take some adjusting to. Having a clear idea of your individual roles may help set expectations. It’s a delicate balance. Just be open and honest. Letting the person you care for know you’re there for them goes a long way.

As a carer, how do I manage stress?

In a patient-carer relationship, it’s natural to have misunderstandings. But there are things you can do that may help manage your stress:

  • Understand that both you and the person you are caring for can experience intense frustration—it’s important to avoid sounding impatient or frustrated when dealing with the person you’re caring for.
  • Everybody has good days and bad days. Try a change of scenery. This can be fun and foster a sense of closeness.
  • Make exercise a part of your routine. Even taking a walk and getting fresh air can help.Always check with your doctor before starting an exercise program.
  • Take time out for you. Parkinson’s doesn’t only impact the patient; it’s important to acknowledge the profound impact on the carer.
 

As a carer, how do I take care of myself?

In the role of carer, you’re many things to the person you care for, but it’s important to realize that you need to take some “me” time on a regular basis to decompress, let out frustrations, and deal with your own day-to-day life.

 

TIPS

  • Know that you’re not alone—and you should never feel guilty if you feel overwhelmed

  • Find time out for yourself. Don’t be afraid to ask for and accept support. Sometimes it’s as simple as making a to-do list for other people. You may be surprised how willing they can be to help out

  • Don’t be afraid to share your emotions. Find a friend or other family member to talk to. He/she may offer a fresh perspective and help you deal with your own emotions and caregiving challenges

Important Safety Information

What is the most important safety information I should know about DUOPA?

  • Stomach and intestine (gastrointestinal) problems and problems from the procedure you will need to have to receive DUOPA (gastrointestinal procedure-related problems) may occur. Some of these problems may require surgery and may lead to death.

Your healthcare provider will talk to you about the stoma procedure. Before the stoma procedure, tell your healthcare provider if you ever had a surgery or problems with your stomach.

Talk to your healthcare provider about what you need to do to care for your stoma. After the procedure, you and your healthcare provider will need to regularly check the stoma for any signs of infection.

  • Symptoms of infection may include: drainage, redness, swelling, pain, or feeling of warmth around the small hole in your stomach wall (stoma).

Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms of stomach and intestine problems and gastrointestinal procedure-related problems: stomach (abdominal) pain; constipation that does not go away; nausea or vomiting; fever; blood in your stool; or a dark tarry stool.

Do not take DUOPA if you currently take or have recently taken (within 2 weeks) a medication for depression called a non-selective monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor. Ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist if you are not sure if you take an MAO Inhibitor.

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Using DUOPA with certain other medicines, including medications for high blood pressure, MAO inhibitors, antipsychotics, metoclopramide, isoniazid, and iron or vitamin supplements, may cause serious side effects. High-protein foods may affect how DUOPA works. Tell your healthcare provider if you change your diet.

DUOPA may cause serious side effects. Talk to your doctor before starting DUOPA and while on DUOPA if you have had or have any of these:

  • Falling asleep during normal daily activities without warning. DUOPA may cause you to fall asleep while you are doing daily activities such as driving, which may result in an accident. This can happen as late as one year after starting DUOPA. Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how DUOPA affects you. Tell your healthcare provider if you take medicines that can make you sleepy, such as sleep medicines, antidepressants, or antipsychotics.

  • Low blood pressure when you stand or sit up quickly. After you have been sitting or lying down, stand up slowly to help reduce dizziness, nausea, sweating, or fainting until you know how DUOPA affects you.

  • Seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not real (hallucinations).

  • Unusual urges. Some people taking medicines for Parkinson’s disease, including DUOPA, have reported urges such as excessive gambling, compulsive eating, compulsive shopping, and increased sex drive.

  • Depression and suicide. DUOPA can cause or worsen depression. Pay close attention to changes in your mood, behavior, thoughts, or feelings. Call your healthcare provider right away if you feel depressed or have thoughts of suicide.

  • Uncontrolled sudden movements (dyskinesia). If you have new dyskinesia or your dyskinesia gets worse, tell your healthcare provider. This may be a sign that your dose of DUOPA or other Parkinson’s medicines may need to be adjusted.

  • Progressive weakness or numbness or loss of sensation in the fingers or feet (neuropathy).

  • Heart attack or other heart problems. Tell your healthcare provider if you have experienced increased blood pressure, a fast or irregular heartbeat, or chest pain.

  • Parkinson’s disease patients are at an increased risk of developing melanoma, a form of skin cancer. See your healthcare provider for regular skin examinations when taking DUOPA.

  • Abnormal blood tests. DUOPA may cause changes in certain blood tests, especially certain hormone and kidney blood tests.

  • Worsening of the increased pressure in your eyes (glaucoma). The pressure in your eyes should be checked after starting DUOPA.

Do not stop using DUOPA or change your dose unless you are told to do so by your healthcare provider. Tell your healthcare provider if you develop withdrawal symptoms such as fever, confusion, or severe muscle stiffness.

The most common side effects of DUOPA include: complications of tubing placement procedure, swelling of legs and feet, nausea, high blood pressure (hypertension), depression, and mouth and throat pain.

Please see the full Prescribing Information including Medication Guide for additional information about DUOPA. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have questions.

Use

DUOPA (carbidopa and levodopa) enteral suspension is a prescription medicine used for treatment of advanced Parkinson’s disease. DUOPA contains two medicines: carbidopa and levodopa.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

What is the most important safety information I should know about DUOPA?

  • Stomach and intestine (gastrointestinal) problems and problems from the procedure you will need to have to receive DUOPA (gastrointestinal procedure-related problems) may occur. Some of these problems may require surgery and may lead to death.

Your healthcare provider will talk to you about the stoma procedure. Before the stoma procedure, tell your healthcare provider if you ever had a surgery or problems with your stomach.

Talk to your healthcare provider about what you need to do to care for your stoma. After the procedure, you and your healthcare provider will need to regularly check the stoma for any signs of infection.