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Huntington’s Disease

What is Huntington’s Disease?

It is an inherited condition in which nerve cells in the brain break down over time.

What are the symptoms of Huntington’s disease?

  • Mild twitching of the fingers and toes

  • Lack of coordination and a tendency to knock things over

  • Walking difficulties

  • Dance-like or jerky movements of the arms or legs (chorea)

  • Speech and swallowing difficulties

  • Short-term memory loss

  • Difficulties in concentrating and making plans

  • Depression (around one third of people with Huntington’s disease experience depression)

  • Behavioural problems

  • Mood swings, apathy and aggression

Can physiotherapy help people with Huntington’s disease?

Yes. The focus of physiotherapy treatment includes the following:

  • Gait re-education

  • Balance retraining

  • Fall prevention/management

  • Aerobic capacity

  • Muscle strengthening

  • Wheelchair prescription and training

  • Respiratory function

  • Task-specific activities

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