Have you ever heard of the term dopamine agonist? It is important first to understand the terms dopamine and agonist. Dopamine is a chemical produced naturally by the brain and acts as a neurotransmitter. It plays crucial roles for example:
- Keeping you in a good mood
- Promoting Sleep
Abnormal levels of dopamine lead to the development of some diseases, for example, Parkinson’s disease and drug addiction. On the other hand, an agonist binds to a receptor causing it to produce a response.
What is Dopamine Agonist?
It is a medication that will act on the same receptors located in the brain just like dopamine. In a nutshell, dopamine agonist work as a substitute for dopamine; they take the place of dopamine. There are two sub classes of dopamine agonist namely:
- Nonergot dopamine agonist
- Ergoline dopamine agonist
If a patient is under the medication of dopamine agonist and the dosage is reduced significantly or stopped at once, the patient may develop dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome (DAWS). How can you know a patient is suffering from dopamine withdrawal syndrome? Be on the lookout for the following symptoms:
- Panic attacks
- Drug cravings
Dopamine Agonist Drugs
A medical doctor must prescribe dopamine receptor agonist. The following is dopamine agonist drug list:
- Bromocriptine (trade names-Parlodel, Cycloset)
It is used to treat pituitary tumors, Parkinson’s disease, hyperprolactinemia and type 2 diabetes. It can be used alone or with other medication.
- Dostinex cabergoline
It is used to manage prolactinomas, Parkinson’s disease, and uterine fibroids
- Pergolide ( Permax and prascend are trade names)
It is used to treat Parkinson’s disease
- Ropinirole( trade names: Requip, Repreve, Ronirol and Adartrel)
It is used to treat Parkinson’s disease and restless leg syndrome. It can be used alone or with other medications.
- Rotigotine (Neupro)
It is used to treat Parkinson’s disease, restless leg syndrome, and depression.
Dopamine and Parkinson’s Disease
From the above, dopamine agonist medications, it is evident that they are all used to manage Parkinson’s disease (PD). But what causes Parkinson’s disease? Health professionals claim that deficiency of dopamine is inevitable as you age. The fact can be supported by the claim that PD affects individuals over 50 years old; although it can affect people below 50 years in rare occasions. Low levels of dopamine can be linked to some conditions like reduced energy levels and depression. However, extremely low level of dopamine can cause serious complications. As you age, dopamine levels decrease in a section of the brain known as basal ganglia. Consequently, dopamine receptors start to die off. In the long run, most cells are damaged, and levels of dopamine produced declines; this result to Parkinson’s disease. If you have PD, you will experience the following symptoms:
It is the slowness of movement; you have to put extra effort while walking and if getting up from a chair. Eventually, you will develop a particular walking style. At first, you can mistake the symptom and associate it with your age; if you are past 50 years.
Your muscles become too stiff, and you may feel your muscles are tense. Still, as you walk your arms will not swing.
You will note your hands, arms, thumbs and fingers will shake when you are resting. Other parts of the body can be affected by shaking too. If you are too anxious, shaking worsens, but if you rest your hand on an object, it reduces.
- Trouble swallowing saliva
- Aches, pain, and feeling tired
- Experiencing difficulty while writing
The symptoms may worsen over time but at a slower pace; though it will vary from one person to another. To prevent the condition from worsening, you should seek medical intervention; for the doctor to prescribe dopamine agonist Parkinson drugs that will aid in managing the condition. There is no cure for Parkinson disease; however dopamine agonist, Parkinson’s medications, restore normal levels of dopamine by increasing it.
As mentioned earlier, extremely low levels of dopamine can cause depression. How is it possible? Deficiency in dopamine can make you moody; make you lack motivation, and inability to experience pleasure to the extent of wishing you were dead. Thus, dopamine agonist drugs for depression come in handy. Bear in mind that dopamine keeps you motivated and feeling excited. So, dopamine agonist depression medications will relieve you from depression and give you renewed energy; you will experience an antidepressant effect.
When you start taking dopamine agonist, you may experience some side effects for some few days. That’s why it is advisable to consult your doctor to get a prescription and the doctor to monitor you once you start taking dopamine agonist. You can always talk to the health care provider in case you experience side effects of the dopamine agonist. Dopamine agonist has some side effects namely:
- Uncontrolled movements
- Dry mouth
- Swelling in the legs
You may also experience some behavioral side effects. The behavioral side effects entail gambling, shopping, and eating in excess as well as increased sex drive. You can try to reduce the behavioral side effects by resisting the behaviors or minimize the dosage of dopamine agonist but you must talk to your doctor first. Is it possible to reduce the side effects? It is possible if the physician starts you on a lower dosage and increases the medication gradually.
Dopamine is critical for you to survive. If you have Parkinson’s disease, depression or restless leg syndrome, the dopamine agonist is the solution for you. The good thing is that there is a wide variety of dopamine agonist drug. The medications are readily available and affordable.The choice of drug will be determined by some factors like existing medical conditions, symptoms presentation and your age. It is the responsibility of the doctor to determine the drug that suits you best. You only need to schedule a meeting with your doctor and get a prescription, and you can purchase dopamine agonist medication online. If you have a loved one who needs dopamine agonist be it a close relative or friend, you have the necessary information to assist them. Remember, information is power.