Anne continues to challenge and raise awareness of Parkinson’s

Anne Macleod was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2018, but despite the diagnosis, she hasn’t let it hold her back.

By John A. MacInnes
Friday, 4th December 2020, 10:58 am
Annie MacLeod (no relation) Director of Parkinson’s Scotland hopes people will get behind the campaign.
Annie MacLeod (no relation) Director of Parkinson’s Scotland hopes people will get behind the campaign.

Since then, she has continued to raise awareness of the condition, having appeared in the BBC Alba documentary ‘The Shoogly Days’ representing young women who suffer from the condition.

More recently Anne, who works at Comhairle nan Eilean Siar’s Education Department in Stornoway, has turned her attention to promoting ‘No More Can’t, Time for Can’, awareness and fundraising campaign from Parkinson’s UK.

Anne said, “In January 2018 at the age of 46, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease; this being my second neurological condition, secondary to having an acoustic neuroma removed in 2011.

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“I participated in the Trusadh documentary “The Shoogly Days” on BBC Alba and although the hardest thing I have ever done, was honoured to have been given the opportunity to represent other young women with Parkinson’s.”

“I am not the stereotypical elderly gentleman and therefore want to raise awareness that Parkinson’s can affect anyone including the young and women.”

Parkinson’s develops when cells in the brain stop working properly and are lost over time. These brain cells produce a chemical called dopamine and symptoms start to appear when the brain can’t make enough dopamine to control movement properly.

Angela MacLeod, NHS Western Isles Parkinson’s Disease Nurse Specialist, said, “Parkinson’s is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world. There are more than 80 people in the Western Isles with the condition, and this number is predicted to increase by 40 per cent within the next 20 years.

“It affects everyone differently and I have yet to meet the two patients who have the same symptoms. I am delighted that the ‘Time for Can’ campaign shines a light on various ways in which anyone can get involved and take action now to improve the lives of those affected by the condition.”

During November and December, the campaign, which aims to raise £1 million for Parkinson’s UK research, features an advert aimed at increasing understanding of the condition and the charity, celebrating its research breakthroughs over the past 50 years.