Dystonia 11

Myoclonic dystonia

Overview

Type of disease: Rare conditions

Dystonia 11 is a type of dyskinesia, or a disorder that involves muscle movements that cannot be controlled. Individuals with this type of dystonia experience quick muscle jerks or twitches, usually in the neck, arms, body trunk, and legs. These movements are usually triggered by advanced movement tasks like writing or drawing, or by stress, sudden noise, and caffeine. Other symptoms that may occur include depression, anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive compulsive disorder, and alcohol abuse. Usually, individuals will begin showing symptoms of dystonia 11 in childhood or in the early teenage years.

Dystonia 11 is inherited in an autosomal dominant manner. We inherit our genes in pairs, typically one from each parent. Our genes are what control the growth, development, and function of our bodies. If a mistake or error occurs in a gene, it can cause problems. Autosomal dominant means an individual inherits only one copy of the changed gene, or mutation, that causes the condition. Dystonia 11 is unique in that only a changed gene inherited from the father will cause the condition. Therefore, if a father is a carrier for the changed gene, each child will have a 50% chance of having the condition. If a mother is a carrier, the child will usually not develop the condition.

Doctors can diagnose dystonia 11 by looking at clinical symptoms and pictures of the brain. This condition is treatable. Treatment depends on the types of symptoms that are experienced by each individual. Medications can often be given in order to help make the muscle movements better. For some, the condition gets better over time, while for others it gets worse. Individuals with dystonia 11 live as long as individuals without it, but their quality of life may be different.

If you or a family member has been diagnosed with dystonia 11, talk with your doctor about the most current treatment options.

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