After returning from Scotland about a week ago, I am slowly bouncing back to my pre-World Parkinson Congress self. Despite the toll that traveling has taken on my weary body and tired brain, David Iverson’s presentation is one that I won’t forget.
World Parkinson Congress, Glasgow, Scotland, September 29, 2010
From Presentation by David Iverson entitled: Genetics and Me: Patient Perspective
David Iverson has been a producer, writer and correspondent for public broadcasting for 30 years. Most recently, he was the writer, correspondent and co-producer/director of the February 2009 PBS Frontline documentary My Father, My Brother and Me, which explored his family’s battle with Parkinson’s Disease. Iverson is based in San Francisco, where he also hosts radio and television programs for public broadcasting, including the Friday edition of Forum on KQED public radio.
The three Iverson men all have one thing in common: Parkinson's Disease.
Iverson provided an interesting perspective on genetic testing that I hadn't considered. While Iverson may want to consider genetic testing for himself, his decision impacts his entire family. If he decides to proceed with the testing while his family does not want to know the results, he has to live with the burden of the tests results, good or bad, and not be able to share with his family. Because of this, he has decided not to proceed.
Inspiring words in Iverson's presentation:
It's all about balance and hope
Hope doesn't get you out but it gets you through
Parkinson’s steals your movement and robs you of your voice
Life is fragile
Each of us has our own version of Parkinson’s with no operating instructions
The power of family and the promise of science
Time is our enemy, and time is our ally
The enduring power of the human spirit
Run with what you've got and keep running toward tomorrow