Hypokalemic periodic paralysis

Overview

Type of disease: Rare conditions

Hypokalemic periodic paralysis is a condition that causes episodes of extreme muscle weakness typically beginning in childhood or adolescence. Most often, these episodes involve a temporary inability to move muscles in the arms and legs. The duration and frequency of the episodes may vary. Hypokalemic periodic paralysis is caused by mutations in the CACNA1S and SCN4A genes which are inherited in an autosomal dominant fashion. A small percentage of people with the characteristic features of hypokalemic periodic paralysis do not have identified mutations in these genes. In these cases, the cause of the condition is unknown.  Paralytic crises can be treated with oral or IV potassium. Other management includes prevention of crises and support of specific symptoms. Source: Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD), supported by ORDR-NCATS and NHGRI.

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