There's no treatment specifically for ataxia. In some cases, treating the underlying cause resolves the ataxia. In other cases, such as ataxia that results from chickenpox or other viral infection, it's likely to resolve on its own over time. Your doctor may recommend adaptive devices or therapies to help with your ataxia.
For ataxia caused by conditions such as multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy, ataxia might not be treatable. In that case, your doctor may be able to recommend adaptive devices. They include:
- Canes or walkers for walking
- Modified utensils for eating
- Communication aids for speaking
You might benefit from certain therapies, including:
Mar. 01, 2011
- Physical therapy to help you build strength and enhance your mobility
- Occupational therapy to help you with daily living tasks, such as feeding yourself
- Speech therapy to improve speech and aid swallowing
- NINDS ataxias and cerebellar or spinocerebellar degeneration information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/ataxia/ataxia.htm. Accessed Dec. 9, 2010.
- Frequently asked questions about Fredreich's ataxia (FRDA). National Ataxia Foundation. http://www.ataxia.org/resources/publications.aspx. Accessed Dec.30, 2010.
- Paulson HL. The spinocerebellar ataxias. Journal of Neuro-Opthalmology. 2009;29:227.
- Frequently asked questions about episodic ataxia. National Ataxia Foundation. http://www.ataxia.org/resources/publications.aspx. Accessed Dec. 9, 2010.
- Klockgether T. Sporadic ataxia with adult onset: Classification and diagnostic criteria. The Lancet Neurology. 2010;9:94.
- Ataxia-Telangiectasia (A-T). National Ataxia Foundation. http://www.ataxia.org/resources/publications.aspx. Accessed Dec. 9, 2010.
- Ataxia telangiectasia: Fact sheet. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/ataxiaqa. Accessed Dec. 9, 2010.
- Opal P, et al. Overview of the hereditary ataxias. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Nov. 22, 2010.