Cervical Dystonia

Overview

Type of disease: Rare conditions

Cervical dystonia is a focal dystonia characterized by excessive pulling of the muscles of the neck and shoulder resulting in abnormal movements of the head. Most commonly, the head turns to one side or the other. Tilting sideways, or to the back or front may also occur.  The turning or tilting movements may be accompanied by tremor and/or soreness of the muscles of the neck and shoulders.  Cervical dystonia can occur at any age, although most individuals first experience symptoms in middle age. It often begins slowly and usually reaches a plateau over a few months or years. Treatment may include local intramuscular injections of botulinum toxin, analgesics, benzodiazepines (anti-anxiety medications), anticholinergics, physical therapy, or surgery. Source: Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD), supported by ORDR-NCATS and NHGRI.

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