A neurological disorder
A rare, but very incapacitating illness
These contractions, which are sometimes very painful, may result in abnormal posture, twisting or repetitive movements.
Dystonia is a symptom which may be present in very many diseases.
In children, the most frequent cause of dystonia is cerebral palsy. Although rare, prevalence is estimated at 12/100,000 people. In children dystonia interferes with all daily activities and is described as very incapacitating.
- Unfortunately no neuroprotective treatment is currently available.
- Several symptomatic treatments may make it possible to improve the treatment of dystonia. As there is no real consensus concerning medical treatment, this often remains empirical and takes into account the patient’s lifestyle and the aetiology of the dystonia.
- Usually the first-line treatment is dopaminergic (levodopa, carbidopa).
- The second line is anticholinergic-based (trihexyphenidyl, benzotropine).
Amongst the alternative treatments are the benzodiazepines (clonazepam), GABAb receptor agonists (baclofen), dopamine agonists and presynaptic dopamine agonists.