Treatment

There's no treatment specifically for ataxia. In some cases, treating the underlying cause resolves the ataxia, such as stopping medications that cause it. In other cases, such as ataxia that results from chickenpox or other viral infection, it's likely to resolve on its own. Your doctor might recommend treatment to manage symptoms, such as pain, fatigue or dizziness or adaptive devices or therapies to help with your ataxia.

Adaptive devices

Ataxia caused by conditions such as multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy might not be treatable. In that case, your doctor may be able to recommend adaptive devices. They include:

  • Hiking sticks or walkers for walking
  • Modified utensils for eating
  • Communication aids for speaking

Therapies

You might benefit from certain therapies, including:

  • Physical therapy to help your coordination 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
March 14, 2017
References
  1. 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 Oct. 26, 2016.
  2. Todd PK. Overview of cerebellar ataxias in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Oct. 26, 2016.
  3. Perlman SL. Evaluation and management of ataxic disorders: An overview for physicians. National Ataxia Foundation. http://www.ataxia.org/resources/publications.aspx. Accessed Oct. 26, 2016.
  4. Ataxia telangiectasia. National Cancer Institute. https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/genetics/ataxia-fact-sheet. Accessed Oct. 26, 2016.