Dystonia Specialist Thibodaux LA

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.

Kenneth Allen Gaddis, MD
(985) 446-9785
1107 Audubon Ave Ste A
Thibodaux, LA
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In New Orleans, New Orleans La 70112
Graduation Year: 1966

Data Provided by:
Henry Carson Mc Kowen, MD
(985) 447-2645
1105 Audubon Ave Ste A
Thibodaux, LA
Specialties
Neurological Surgery
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In New Orleans, New Orleans La 70112
Graduation Year: 1981

Data Provided by:
David Louis Weir
(985) 917-3007
8120 Main St
Houma, LA
Specialty
Neurology

Data Provided by:
Dr.Donald Gervais
(985) 850-6800
8120 Main St # 400
Houma, LA
Gender
M
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In New Orleans
Year of Graduation: 1995
Speciality
Neurologist
General Information
Accepting New Patients: Yes
RateMD Rating
4.3, out of 5 based on 5, reviews.

Data Provided by:
David Louis Weir, MD
(985) 917-3007
8120 Main St Ste 400
Houma, LA
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In New Orleans, New Orleans La 70112
Graduation Year: 1987

Data Provided by:
Deepak Awasthi, MD
(985) 447-2645
1105 Audubon Ave Ste A
Thibodaux, LA
Specialties
Neurological Surgery
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: New York Univ Sch Of Med, New York Ny 10016
Graduation Year: 1986

Data Provided by:
Thomas Rowell Donner, MD
(985) 447-2645
1105 Audubon Ave Ste A
Thibodaux, LA
Specialties
Neurological Surgery
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In New Orleans, New Orleans La 70112
Graduation Year: 1988

Data Provided by:
Phillip V Mc Allister, MD
(985) 917-3007
199 Autumn Dr
Houma, LA
Specialties
Neurological Surgery
Gender
Male
Languages
Spanish
Education
Medical School: Med Coll Of Ga Sch Of Med, Augusta Ga 30912
Graduation Year: 1988
Hospital
Hospital: South Georgia Med Ctr, Valdosta, Ga; Smith Northview Hosp, Valdosta, Ga
Group Practice: Neurological Institute

Data Provided by:
Lori Ann Stuart-Hubber
(985) 872-1093
855 Belanger St
Houma, LA
Specialty
Neurology

Data Provided by:
Fred Earhart Aubert Jr, MD
Houma, LA
Specialties
Neurology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In New Orleans, New Orleans La 70112
Graduation Year: 1996

Data Provided by:
Data Provided by:

Life with Dystonia

Provided by: 

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

Copyright 1999-2009 Natural Solutions: Vibrant Health, Balanced Living/Alternative Medicine/InnoVisi...