View Full Version : Question, may seem strange

06-18-06, 11:17 AM
My father had something they called St. Vitus Dance as a child, I believe they now call it Parkinson's Chorea. He has a few tics now and has for all my life.

Is this in any way related to Tourettes? My grandmother always said it was from the "St Vitus Dance", but I am so curious!

TIA for any info I may get :).

06-18-06, 12:12 PM
Sydenham chorea, also called St. Vitus dance, is a childhood movement disorder characterized by rapid, irregular, aimless, involuntary movements of the muscles of the limbs, face, and trunk. The disorder, which is considered a manifestation of rheumatic fever (streptococcal infection), typically has an onset between the ages of 5 and 15. Girls are affected more often than boys. The symptoms may appear gradually or suddenly, and may include muscle weakness, hypotonia (decreased muscle tone), and clumsiness. The symptoms vary in severity--from mild cases in which there is restlessness, facial grimacing, and a slight degree of incoordination of movements, to severe cases involving involuntary movements that incapacitate the child. The disorder may strike up to 6 months after the fever or infection has cleared. The chorea is believed to result from an autoimmune mechanism that occurs when the streptococcal infection causes the body to make antibodies to specific brain regions.

06-18-06, 12:21 PM
Thanks Andrew, that helps a small bit. What I don't get is why he still has tics at 65? :confused:

06-26-06, 07:12 AM
Is this in any way related to Tourettes? My grandmother always said it was from the "St Vitus Dance", but I am so curious!
Tics can be caused by a general medical condition, however I believe the DSM IV states that it cannot be classed as a tic disorder if this is the case. I may be wrong, but that's how I interpreted the following:

The disturbance is not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g., stimulants) or a general medical condition (e.g., Huntington’s disease or postviral encephalitis).(Taken from the DSM IV. The same clause is written under each tic disorder.)

09-15-07, 04:27 PM
Thanks Andrew, that helps a small bit. What I don't get is why he still has tics at 65? :confused: Maybe they missed the diagnosis when he was a kid -- that was a long time ago. Maybe he had Tourettes and they attributed it to something else more common back then, since he still has tics and such. Don't know -- interesting question though.

09-15-07, 05:01 PM

The symptoms include;
Both multiple motor and one or more vocal tics present at some time during the illness although not necessarily in the same way;
The occurrence of ticks many times a day (usually in bouts) nearly every day or intermittently throughout a span of more than one year;
The periodic change in the number, frequency, type and location of the tics, disappear for weeks or months at a time; and
Onset before the age of 18.

09-15-07, 05:08 PM

Is there any treatment?
<disorder_treatment> </disorder_treatment>There is no standard course of treatment for chorea. Treatment depends on the type of chorea and the associated disease. Treatment for Huntington's disease is supportive, while treatment for Syndenham's chorea usually involves antibiotic drugs to treat the infection, followed by drug therapy to prevent recurrence. Adjusting medication dosages can treat drug-induced chorea. Metabolic and endocrine-related choreas are treated according to the cause(s) of symptoms.

10-14-07, 07:27 PM
what is tic

10-14-07, 08:12 PM
A tic is an involuntary movement of some kind.

Me :D

what is tic

10-14-07, 08:21 PM
my friend has tics is kinda odd

10-14-07, 08:49 PM
choreoathetosis? Chorea means "dance", like choreography. I think athetosis is "writhing".

10-14-07, 08:52 PM
I bet in post-infectious versions, it has affected (damaged) the "motor cortex" or cerebellum of the brain.

To move, we not only have generation of movement messages happening, but also "inhibitions" that keep us from moving "too much".

I just asked the good doctor here and says he has never seen a case. <!>

10-14-07, 08:56 PM
There are other post infective motor disorders too: e.g. Reye's Syndrome, post-encephalitis/meningitis conditions.

CF, mebbe the tics are a smaller residual sign of damage vs. whole limb manifestations that he may have originally had?

Or, mebbe Dx was incorrect? Don't think there is a "test" for Sydenham's CHorea. (And it sounds rare.)