A period during which dosage of one of the anti-parkinson’s medications should still be effective but is not. Wearing-off is an indication that levodopa is losing its ability to meet the brain’s dopamine needs. Some people benefit from switching to a controlled release formula of sinemet, the most common form of levodopa therapy used to provide a longer steady-state level of medication, and then supplement as needed with dosages of the regular release formulation. adjunct therapies such as DOPAMINE AGONIST MEDICATIONS and CATECHOL-0-METHYLTRANSFERASE (COMT) INHIBITOR MEDICATIONS also can extend on-states.
During a wearing off state, the person with Parkinson’s experiences some but not complete or predictable relief from symptoms. Wearing off is frustrating for the person with Parkinson’s because there can be no predictability to it and it can be demoralizing as it is a sign of disease progression. Maintaining a sense of humor about unexpected situations and remaining calm when the body refuses to respond are helpful responses. Wearing-off is not quite as disruptive as the off-states that occur later in Parkinson’s, in which the disease’s progression exceeds the ability of medications to control symptoms, which become both extensive and dominant.