Forms of Dystonia
There are many types of dystonia.
And many diseases and conditions may include dystonia as a symptom.
Dystonia is classified by:
1. Clinical characteristics such as age of onset, body distribution, nature of the symptoms, and associated features such as additional movement disorders or neurological symptoms, and
2. Cause (which includes changes or damage to the nervous system and inheritance). Doctors use these classifications to guide diagnosis and treatment.
Forms of dystonia include:
- Focal dystonias - Affecting a specific group of muscles or body part:
► Blepharospasm: Dystonia that affects the muscles of the eyelids and brow.
► Cervical dystonia (spasmodic torticollis): Dystonia that affects the neck and sometimes the shoulders.
► Oromandibular dystonia (cranial dystonia): Symptoms include forceful contractions of the face, jaw, and/or tongue.
► Spasmodic dysphonia (laryngeal dystonia): Dystonia that affects the vocal cords.
► Hand dystonia (writer's cramp): Dystonia of the fingers, hand, and/or forearm.
► Lower limb dystonia: Dystonia of the leg, foot, and/or toes.
- Musicians' dystonias (task-specific)
- Early-onset generalized dystonia (DYT1 and non-DYT1): Early-onset generalized dystonia is characterized by twisting of the limbs and torso.
- Dopa-responsive dystonia: A group of dystonias that respond to a medication called levodopa.
- Myoclonus dystonia: A hereditary form of dystonia that includes prominent myoclonus symptoms.
- Paroxysmal dystonias and dyskinesias: Episodic movement disorders in which abnormal movements occur only during attacks.
- X-linked dystonia-parkinsonism: A hereditary form of dystonia that includes symptoms of parkinsonism.
- Rapid-onset dystonia-parkinsonism: A hereditary form of dystonia that includes symptoms of parkinsonism.
- Secondary dystonias: Dystonia that is triggered by factors such as trauma, medication exposure, toxins.
► Trauma: Dystonia may follow trauma to the head and/or to a specific body area.
► Drug-induced (Tardive dystonia & dyskinesias): Specific drugs are capable of causing dystonia.
► Toxins: Several rare toxins are known to cause movement disorders.
► Neurological and metabolic disorders: Dystonia can occur as a symptom of multiple disorders.
- Psychogenic dystonia: Dystonia that is secondary to underlying psychological/psychiatric causes.
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