Parkinson's disease

Since the beginning of career I am interested in neurology. Parkinson's disease started fascinating me from 2005 when I began to work on my PhD thesis. Soon after I became member of the team of professional caregivers of the Parkinson Centre Nijmegen and in 2007 I got involved in the development of ParkinsonNet.

Logopedie-bij-de-ziekte-van-Parkinson1         PN     

To train the speech-language therapist in ParkinsonNet to become Parkinson-specialists based on current best practice, in 2008 we published an evidence-based guideline Speech-language therapy in Parkinsons disease
Currently, ParkinsonNet is a successful national and international organization with more than 3000 dedicated Parkinson specialists, including 400 speech-language therapists. Check the websites for all information in Dutch or in English.
Please find below some personal highlights.


Fifth episode of the new ParkinsonTV series by Parkinson Disease Care New York in collaboration with ParkinsonNet Netherlands.

Speech therapy and Parkinson's Speaking your mind 

On August 12, I had the honour to present a lecture about swallowing and Parkinson's disease for patients and caregivers, in the Education Centre of the Parkinson Voice Project in Richardson, Texas.

In 2017, the whole world memorated that 200 years ago James Parkinson (1755-1824) published his 'An Essay on the Shaking Palsy'. I took the opportunity to write a blog about another common interest: paleontology.

Parkinson5 Parkinson3 Left: Illustration from Outlines of Oryctology. An Introduction to the Study of Fossil Organic Remains by James Parkinson (1822). 

Right: specimen of Parkinsonia rarecostata (personal collection).


In 2016 I attended the World Parkinson Congress in Portland to present about speech therapy in PD.
Click on the video on the right: do we really listen to what patients need and want? 

 WPC4     WPC2


In 2015 I became co-chair of the Health Professionals (Non-Physicians) Special Interest Group of the Movement Disorders Society. 

Leaders HP SIG



ParkinsonNet also provides education for patients and caregivers about all aspects of consequences and treatment of Parkinson's disease in monthly broadcasts of ParkinsonTV.
In July 2014 we made an episode about speech ('Spreken en parkinson').


In June
2013 I was guest editor of a theme issue on Parkinson's disease of the national journal Logopedie. You can read all articles here (in Dutch).


For the Movement Disorders Soeciety congres in June 2012 in Dublin, prof. Bas Bloem was asked to defend the position that Parkinson's disease is a clinically based diagnosis. In preparation of that speech he posted a 
videoblog asking clinicians, patients ans caregivers: "What is really important for the diagnosis of Parkinson's disease?" I responded from home with a video.


In 2011 I finished my PhD thesis Drooling and dysphagia in Parkinson's disease.

See my research page for all related papers.