Guide To The Warning Signs Of Spinocerebellar Ataxia

Spinocerebellar ataxia is an incurable genetic disease. This condition has many different types, though the most common is SCA3. Symptoms may vary between types, but they can all have similar warning signs. This condition is hereditary and caused by gene mutations passed down from parent to child. Many individuals with these mutations are asymptomatic. However, symptoms can present themselves or become worse at any point in life. It can severely affect physical movements. This condition can also impair learning, vision, and many of the body's other functions. 

Unfortunately, there is no cure for spinocerebellar ataxia. However, patients have several options for spinocerebellar ataxia treatment. The specific treatments may vary based on the type and symptoms in each patient. Physical therapy for spinocerebellar ataxia is fairly common. Assistive devices may also be used. However, patients must first understand their symptoms and then discuss the best spinocerebellar ataxia treatment for their needs with a doctor.

Coordination And Balance Problems 


The first warning signs of spinocerebellar ataxia are often coordination and balance problems. These are hallmark traits of the disease because they are common, regardless of the specific type of this condition. Patients often have trouble walking naturally or appear to others as being clumsy. Turning can be particularly difficult. This is because the cerebellum, the part of the brain where the disease gets its name, is typically affected. It is largely responsible for controlling the body's movements. 

Balance problems, even when standing, can happen for many reasons in this condition. Both the severity and reasons for this can differ between the different types. The deterioration of the cerebellum is the main cause in most cases. However, it can also lead to certain conditions, which can serve as secondary causes. Episodic vertigo is one such secondary cause of balance problems. This condition can cause an individual to lose their balance or become dizzy in episodes that may last minutes or hours. 

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HealthPrep Staff