Triumphing Over Parkinson's: Fulvio Capitanio's Inspiring Journey

"I never imagined that, at the age of 40, a little problem with handwriting or walking could be related to Parkinson's disease. It was really shocking to hear that diagnosis assigned to me because I always related Parkinson's to older people like Pope John Paul II or Muhammad Ali."

In 2022, Fulvio Capitanio bravely shared his life's journey and purpose with the World Parkinson Coalition. Diagnosed with Parkinson's in 2007, he made the difficult decision to retire from work in 2009 due to increasing stress levels. However, retirement didn't suit him well, and he found himself struggling with depression and a sense of idle time.

Fulvio realized that he wanted to make a difference while he was still in good health. He posed a vital question to himself, "How can I be entitled to ask for help in 10 years if I didn't do anything to help others now?"

Inspired to take action, he, along with four friends, founded the online forum "Unidos contra el Parkinson" (United against Parkinson's disease). Today, Fulvio proudly co-chairs the WPC Parkinson Advocates Committee, making a significant impact in the Parkinson's community.

Their journey began with a mission to address the lack of Parkinson's resources available in Spanish and Italian. The group dedicated their efforts to create a Parkinson's resource page accessible to patients in Europe and South America.

Additionally, they developed a heartwarming comic book titled "Through the Eyes of a Child," aimed at helping parents explain Parkinson's disease to their children. The comic book has been translated into 8 languages and has seen almost 300,000 copies published in Spain, Italy, USA, and Brazil, touching the lives of countless families affected by the condition.

Their unwavering commitment and dedication caught the attention of the Spanish Society of Neurology, which honored "United against P√°rkinson" with the prestigious 2015 prize. The recognition highlighted their efforts to enhance patient care and support research while promoting citizen participation, social awareness, and solidarity within the Parkinson's community.

Despite the challenges posed by Parkinson's, Fulvio remains determined to fight the battle head-on. Table Tennis has become his main activity to stay active and counter the effects of the disease. He sportingly agreed to be part of the ITTF Foundation's demo research at the World Parkinson Congress, conducted with Sense4Care (and their Stat-On device), which yielded positive results for all participants.

At the Foundation, we are deeply privileged to have Fulvio's support in spreading the message about the benefits of Table Tennis for those affected by Parkinson's. Through his journey, he continues to inspire hope and empowerment, showing that with determination and unity, we can overcome the obstacles of Parkinson's disease.

If you too wish to be a part of this incredible journey, we invite you to register for the World Parkinson's Table Tennis Championships 2023. Click here and join us in making a positive impact and sharing the spirit of resilience in the face of Parkinson's.

You can also read more about our experience at the World Parkinson Congress here.

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