Dystonia Specialist Mccomb MS

Dystonia is the third most common movement disorder, next to Parkinson’s disease and Tremor, affecting at least 300,000 people in North America. It is a neurological condition that results in sustained and involuntary contractions of opposing muscles, which leads to spasmodic movements, twisting, and abnormal stances.

Tina Foley Neville, MD
300 Rawls Dr Ste 800
McComb, MS
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Ms Sch Of Med, Jackson Ms 39216
Graduation Year: 1990
Hospital
Hospital: Southwest Mississippi Reg Med, McComb, Ms

Data Provided by:
Joseph William Farina Jr, MD
(601) 249-2491
118 N Broadway
McComb, MS
Specialties
Neurology, Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of South Al Coll Of Med, Mobile Al 36688
Graduation Year: 1984
Hospital
Hospital: Hancock Med Ctr, Bay St Louis, Ms
Group Practice: Mc Comb Neurology

Data Provided by:
Amy Chanda Miller
(662) 377-3161
4579 S Eason Blvd Ste A
Tupelo, MS
Specialty
Neurology

Data Provided by:
Joseph William Farina
(601) 249-2491
118 N Broadway
Mccomb, MS
Specialty
Neurology

Data Provided by:
Jason Edward Tullis, MD
(601) 984-5705
2500 N State St Neurosurgery
Jackson, MS
Specialties
Neurological Surgery
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Creighton Univ Sch Of Med, Omaha Ne 68178
Graduation Year: 2000

Data Provided by:
Joseph William Farina
(601) 249-2491
118 N Broadway
Mccomb, MS
Specialty
Neurology

Data Provided by:
Donna Leigh Harrington, MD
(662) 844-7021
PO Box 3246
Tupelo, MS
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Ms Sch Of Med, Jackson Ms 39216
Graduation Year: 1982
Hospital
Hospital: North Mississippi Med Ctr, Tupelo, Ms
Group Practice: Tupelo Neurology Clinic

Data Provided by:
William Earl Owens IV, MD
(352) 392-3491
Corinth, MS
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Ms Sch Of Med, Jackson Ms 39216
Graduation Year: 1999

Data Provided by:
Salil Chandra Tiwari
(601) 981-0039
971 Lakeland Dr
Jackson, MS
Specialty
Neurology

Data Provided by:
Miguel Angel Pappolla, MD
(251) 460-7000
550 Beach Dr
Gulfport, MS
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ De Buenos Aires, Fac De Med, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Graduation Year: 1978

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Life with Dystonia

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By Ellen L. Weisberg, PhD

Dystonia is the third most common movement disorder, next to Parkinson’s disease and Tremor, affecting at least 300,000 people in North America. It is a neurological condition that results in sustained and involuntary contractions of opposing muscles, which leads to spasmodic movements, twisting, and abnormal stances. Like Parkinson’s disease, dystonia is believed to be due to an abnormality in the basal ganglia of the brain, where movement is controlled.

The symptoms of dystonia first surfaced when I was in the middle of a radio shift, getting ready to record what I thought would be another effortless 30-second broadcast in a string of reports. Halfway through it, the left side of my mouth started twisting inward, making it difficult for me to talk. At the time, I remember wondering if there was something with my delivery style that had- over time- become subtly different… Was my chair too high or too low and I was straining my neck to get to the microphone? Did it have to do with the amount of gesturing I was doing with my hands when I talked?

As time went on, though, the difficulties I was having with my broadcasting increased, and getting the job done comfortably and in a timely fashion was becoming more and more of a struggle. My coworkers thought that maybe I was having sudden “stage fright,” or that it was simply stress that was causing this, since my conversational speech away from the microphone seemed normal. It was only when I saw a neurologist that the situation became clearer: I was diagnosed with a “focal dystonia,” which targets a specific part of the body and usually afflicts people at mid-life. My condition, “task- specific oromandibular dystonia,” causes the jaw to either be clamped shut or held open and is brought on at least in part by repetitive movements. I had been doing two and a half years of daily broadcasting for hours on end, repeating similar phrases and articulating in a way that was different from my regular, away-from-the-microphone speech. I tried to return to broadcasting several times when the symptoms of the dystonia had temporarily quieted down, only to have to quit again when the condition would relapse. The symptoms eventually slipped over into my conversational speech, and there were times they were so debilitating that I thought I’d never be able to hold a normal conversation again.

I had consulted a second neurologist who prescribed Artane, an anticholinergic agent that improves muscle control in Parkinson’s patients. After a brief honeymoon, “fool’s gold”-kind of experience with the drug that lasted only a few days during which my speech seemed more effortless, the Artane lost its effects. My neurologist also tried administering Botox injections on the side of my mouth where muscles were twisting in such a way as to make speaking difficult. However, it was shortly after the injections that the condition relapsed to the point where I could barely talk at all. Continuing...

Author: Ellen L. Weisberg, PhD

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