What is dopa-responsive dystonia?
Dopa-responsive dystonia is a term that is used to describe a group of neurological movement disorders that can be treated with a medication called levodopa which is a synthetic form of dopamine.
What causes dopa-responsive dystonia?
Dopa-responsive dystonia is caused by mutations in a specific gene that leads to problems with the production of a chemical in the brain called dopamine.
As a result, incorrect signals are sent from the brain to the affected body part.
What are the symptoms of dopa-responsive dystonia?
The symptoms of dopa-responsive dystonia usually start in the feet and legs but they can also spread to the muscles of the arms and torso.
The severity of the symptoms is likely to fluctuate and worsen throughout the day.
They may include:
- A stiff-legged way of walking.
- Upward bending of the sole of the foot.
- Feet that turn outward at the ankle.
- Toe walking.
- Muscle spasms.
Symptoms of Parkinsonism can also show. They may include:
- Slow movement.
- Resistance to movement.
- Problems with balance.
- Unstable posture.