Susan C. Imke, FNP, GNP-C
Financial Relationship: Received an honorarium for this lecture
Nonfinancial Relationship: None
Susan Imke, FNP, GNP-C, is certified as a gerontological nurse practitioner specializing in the neurology of aging, with a primary focus on families living with Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. Imke earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from West Texas A&M University and a Master of Science Degree in Community Health Education from the University of North Texas. In 2018 she completed a graduate certification program in Spiritual Direction at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University. She is an educational consultant to the Parkinson’s Foundation and a member of the International Parkinson Disease and Movement Disorder Society. Imke has authored numerous publications related to Parkinson’s disease and dementia, and is a frequent speaker to audiences of health professionals, patients, and caregivers on neurology of aging and living with chronic disease.
Patient education for people with Parkinson’s disease and their care partners is often focused on managing motor and non-motor symptoms with appropriate medications, the importance of exercise, and allied health interventions to remain independent and prevent falls. Improving nutritional health and the importance of adequate hydration is sometimes overlooked but is an important strategy to improve one’s quality of life. This presentation explains common Parkinson’s changes in the GI tract, how a reduced sense of smell and taste can impact appetite, and prudent choices of over-the-counter nutritional supplements. Scheduling medications for optimal absorption, minimizing swallowing problems, and managing constipation will also be discussed.