Dystonia is a neurological movement disorder that causes muscle contractions, twisting and repetitive movements or abnormal postures. The condition may be hereditary or caused by other factors such as birth-related issues, physical trauma, infection, poisoning, or reaction to medical drugs. At the Neuroscience Institute, our physicians work tirelessly to find innovative and tailored ways to treat symptoms experienced as a result of the disorder.
Symptoms vary depending on the level of dystonia involved. Dystonia tends to lead to abnormal posturing when still and moving. Many patients suffer from continuous pain, cramping and constant muscle spasms due to involuntary muscle movements. The disorder affects about 1 percent of the population. Women are more prone to it than men.
There are different types of dystonia. The Neuroscience Institute provides care for the following:
- Cervical dystonia: Cervical Dystonia affects the neck muscles, causing the head to twist and turn or be pulled backward or forward. It can be treated with Botulinum toxin (Xeomin, Botox, Dysport or Myobloc)
- Belpharospasm: This dystonia affects the eyes
- Tardive dystonia: This dystonia is caused by a reaction to a drug. It is treatable and temporary
- Spasmodic dystonia: Affects the throat muscles responsible for speech
- Oromandibular dystonia: Causes spasms of the jaw, lips, and tongue muscles and can effect speech and swallowing
- Musicians dystonia (Writer's cramp): A type of dystonia that only occurs while writing. It affects the hand and/or forearm muscles
- Generalized dystonia: This very rare dystonia affects the entire body