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Movies & TV

31st Jul 2018

Veteran actor Alan Alda reveals that he is battling Parkinson’s disease

Dave Hanratty

Alan Alda Parkinson's disease

The actor spoke out to help others who might be in a similar situation.

Alan Alda is battling Parkinson’s disease, the Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actor has revealed.

Speaking on CBS This Morning on Tuesday, the star of M*A*S*H and Bridge of Spies admitted that he was first diagnosed with the illness three-and-a-half years ago.

Typically upbeat, the actor began by noting that he’s “doing great” before making his personal announcement.

“I haven’t said in public until now that I’ve been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease,” he said.

“The reason that I want to talk about it in public is that I was diagnosed three-and-a-half years ago and I’ve had a full life since then. I’ve acted, I’ve given talks, I help at the Alda Center for Communicating Science, I started this new podcast, and I’ve noticed that I’ve been on television talking about the podcast and I could see my thumb twitch in some shots.

“And I thought it’s probably only a matter of time before somebody does a story about this from a sad point of view, but that’s not where I am,” Alda added.

Clip via CBS This Morning

Despite not having any noticeable symptoms, the actor explained that he felt that he might have Parkinson’s disease and requested a scan for preventative purposes.

“The thing I want folks to know, and this is not to short-change people who are suffering with severe symptoms, in the very beginning, to be immobilised by fear and think the worst thing has happened to you – it hasn’t happened to you. You still have things you can do.

“I’m taking boxing lessons three times a week, I do singles tennis a couple of times a week, I march to marching music, because it’s good for Parkinson’s.”

Alda added on Twitter that he’s also taken up juggling, and that he is in full control of his faculties.

“I’m not entering dementia,” he said. “I’m no more demented than I was before. Maybe I should rephrase that. Really, I’m good.”

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