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Doctor: Manny Pacquiao may be showing signs of early Parkinson’s Disease

Jan 4, 2013, 10:29 AM EDT

Manny Pacquiao AP

Not something you want to hear to end your week, or anytime really. A leading neurologist in the Philippines said on Thursday that he has observed early signs of Parkinson’s disease from Manny Pacquiao. According to ABS-CBN News, Dr. Rustico Jimenez, President of Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines, said in a radio interview that he has seen evidence that includes stuttering and hand twitching from Pacquiao, which are among early signs of Parkinson’s.

Jimenez hasn’t actually treated Pacquiao, but made his observations after seeing the boxer in post-fight interviews. A translation, via Bad Left Hook:

“Even though his reflexes are quick, I noticed the movement – it’s just another view, my personal view – but it seems like there are early signs. There are some movements that you will notice with his hands. It’s in the hands, and not the head, where you can easily see this. It twitches a little bit. Although I haven’t seen it up close, I think I am seeing that there are some signs.”

Another doctor “expressed alarm” over reports that Pacquiao allegedly had a slight seizure after being knocked out in his fight with Juan Manuel Marquez.

Dr. Raquel Fortun is “not convinced” by the CT scan results from Pacquiao’s post-fight exam. “When the brain gets shook like that, it’s very dangerous. Since it’s not truly fixed to you skull, when your brain gets shaken, there are connections that get cut off, and you get small hemorrhages.”

The forensics expert said that severe head trauma could lead to Alzheimer’s disease or a form of dementia that worsens over time.

Pacquiao’s wife and mother have already said that they want him to give up the sport, which would make sense considering his political career and the fact that he’s already the biggest celebrity in the Philippines. But for some reason — and I’m convinced that it’s not all about the money — it seems to be hard for people who get punched for a living to simply walk away.

  1. progress2011 - Jan 4, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    con·cus·sion [kuh n-kuhsh-uh n]
    1.Pathology . injury to the brain or spinal cord due to jarring from a blow, fall, or the like.
    2.shock caused by the impact of a collision, blow, etc.
    3.the act of violently shaking or jarring.

    I guess taking on a career, where a person has the potential to receive countless CONCUSSIONS per bout, is still not good for your health.

    I wish Pac-Man well but he may need to change careers.

  2. capone888 - Jan 4, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    The ‘early warning signs’ are only there right after his fights. Could the shaking of the hands be from punching his opponent in the head a hundred times? Could his slurring speech be from the punches to his jaw.

    You are not even his Doctor. How can someone come out and say he has the early warning signs of a disease if you are not even treating him?

    • sabatimus - Jan 4, 2013 at 9:45 PM

      He cited doctors and a forensics expert. And I interned in a Parkinson’s resource center, where I learned that there is evidence mounting that concussions and head trauma increase one’s risk for Parkinson’s Disease (and dementia) dramatically. As far as anecdotal, just look at Muhammad Ali.

  3. sailbum7 - Jan 4, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    I do not know if they have found any links between boxing and Parkinsons, but it is interesting that Ali also has Parkinsons. In any case, it sounds like Pacquiao should retire from the fight game for good and concentrate on other things.

  4. baredon - Jan 5, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    Just another retard who committed his life to boxing… Look at Ali, the greatest….. can’t wide his ass without help…

    • bigmeechy74 - Jan 6, 2013 at 10:59 PM

      If you are gonna troll, at least don’t make a glaring typo. Idiot.

  5. namriverrat69 - Jan 5, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    The down side of boxing is early onset dementia or Parkinsons. Here is a youtube video of Jerry Quarry who was an excellent heavy weight fighter back in the late 60s and 70s:

    He was a very hard puncher but he took sooo many punches in return I was not surprised to hear he had developed dementia. A number of his fights are on youtube.

    I watched him fight and was saddened to see this video when it was originally shown years ago. The dementia had seriously progressed at this point in his life. It is a sad way to go, like alzheimers but the thing is, this dementia along with the dementia of his two brothers from boxing all could have been prevented if they had not boxed or quit early on like the oldest brother did.

    • ndnpaint - Jan 5, 2013 at 12:37 AM

      The way Jerry Quarry fought was to constantly take the other fighters best punches in order to position himself for his own punches to be thrown. He never became a world champion b/c of the way he approached the game. As a result of his “style” he amassed so many punches it resulted in the sad state he is in now. Fighters now days practice the art of defense as well as offense and do not not take nearly the amount of punishment that this man did. In addition, some people are simply not as durable as others. The sport of boxing is violent, always has been and probably always will be.
      That being said, these doctors are walking somewhat of a thin line b/c they may be potentially be affecting somebody’s earnings potential. And by making these assumptions without doing extensive tests or being his personal doctor, may be setting themselves up for something.