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All about chorea sydenham chorea Huntington's chorea causes of chorea symptoms of chorea treatment for chorea

What is chorea?

Chorea, also called St. Vitus's dance, is the acute disturbance of the central nervous system characterized by involuntary muscular movements of the face and extremities. Chorea is the ceaseless occurrence of rapid, jerky involuntary movements. The face, tongue and limbs may all be involved. There is associated hypotonia and inability to maintain a posture. Choreiform movements generally occur at right angles to the axis of a limb. Chorea is brief, purposeless

involuntary movements of the distal extremities and face, which may merge imperceptibly into purposeful or semipurposeful acts that mask the involuntary motion. Chorea usually affects both sides of the body, but in some instances only one side of the body is involved. This is referred to as hemichorea.

The disease, known also as Sydenham's chorea (not to be confused with Huntington's disease, a hereditary disease of adults that is sometimes called Huntington's chorea), is usually, but not always, a complication of rheumatic fever. Sydenham's chorea, a disease of children, especially females, usually appears between the ages of 7 and 14. Facial grimacing and jerking movements persist for 6 to 10 weeks and sometimes recur after months or even years. Eventually the symptoms disappear. Although there is no specific treatment, sedatives and tranquilizers are helpful in suppressing the involuntary movements. Technically, it is sometimes called chorea minor or juvenile chorea to distinguish it from several less common choreas, chorea also being a general term for continuous, involuntary jerking movements.

Chorea and athetosis often occur together (choreoathetosis). The most important cause of chorea is Huntington's disease. Other causes include thyrotoxicosis, SLE affecting the CNS, and drugs (eg, antipsychotics). Chorea and athetosis are manifestations of dopaminergic overactivity in the basal ganglia--the antithesis of Parkinson's disease. The role of cholinergic and other systems is less clear in the pathophysiology of the dyskinesias than in that of Parkinson's disease.

More information on chorea

What is chorea? - Chorea is the acute disturbance of the central nervous system characterized by involuntary muscular movements of the face and extremities.
What is sydenham chorea? - Sydenham chorea is an acute neurologic disorder that emerges several months following a streptococcal infection.
What is Huntington's chorea? - Huntington's chorea (Huntington's disease) is a dominantly inherited disease typified by choreoathetosis, rigidity, dementia, ataxia, and ophthalmoplegia.
What causes chorea? - Chorea is caused by overactivity of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the areas of the brain that control movement.
What're the symptoms of chorea? - Chorea is characterized by brief, irregular contractions. Many patients suffer from strep throat, just before developing this new set of symptoms.
What is the treatment for chorea? - There is no standard course of treatment for chorea. Treatment depends on the type of chorea and the associated disease.
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