In dystonia, your muscles contract involuntarily — causing uncontrollable repetitive or twisting movements of the affected body part. Your symptoms may be mild or severe, and may interfere with your performance of many day-to-day tasks.
Doctors divide dystonia into categories including generalized, focal, segmental and other less common categories. In focal dystonia, the most common category, one part of your body is affected. Generalized dystonia affects most or all of your body. In segmental dystonia, two or more adjacent areas of your body are affected. Some types of dystonia are inherited.
Medications can sometimes improve dystonia symptoms, but inconsistently. In some more-severe cases, surgery may be used to disable or regulate certain brain regions or nerves.
May 12, 2012
- Dystonias fact sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/dystonias/detail_dystonias.htm. Accessed Feb. 14, 2012.
- Comella C. Classification and evaluation of dystonia. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Feb. 13, 2012.
- Phukan J, et al. Primary dystonia and dystonia-plus syndromes: Clinical characteristics, diagnosis, and pathogenesis. The Lancet Neurology. 2011;10:1074.
- Dystonias. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/print/sec16/ch221/ch221c.html. Accessed Feb. 13, 2012.
- Neurological diagnostic tests and procedures. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/misc/diagnostic_tests.htm. Accessed Feb. 14, 2012.
- Comella C. Treatment of dystonia. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Feb. 13, 2012.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2012: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/page.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05611-3..00013-6--sc0135&isbn=978-0-323-05611-3&uniqId=317541266-3#4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05611-3..00013-6--sc0135. Accessed Feb. 14, 2012.
- Ozelius LJ, et al. Milestones in dystonia. Movement Disorders. 2011;26:1106.
- Complementary therapy. Dystonia Medical Research Foundation. http://www.dystonia-foundation.org/pages/complementary_therapy/156.php. Accessed Feb. 14, 2012.
- Terms related to complementary and alternative medicine. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/camterms.htm. Accessed Feb. 15, 2012.
- Yoga for health: An introduction. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/yoga/introduction.htm. Accessed Feb. 15, 2012.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.