Senile chorea

What is Senile Chorea?

Senile chorea, also known as Shea Syndrome or Shea-aterial Chorea, is a neurological disorder caused by the degeneration of the nervous system in elderly patients. It is characterized by involuntary and rapid contractions of muscles, often involving the hands, arms, legs and face.

Senile chorea typically begins in late adulthood around the age of 50-60 and is more likely to occur in women than men. It has been associated with aging, stroke, and other conditions that can cause nerve damage. While there is no specific treatment for senile chorea, it can be managed with medications, physical therapy, and lifestyle changes.

Signs and Symptoms of Senile Chorea

The most common symptom of senile chorea is the sudden, involuntary contractions of various muscles in the body. These contractions can involve the hands, arms, face, and other muscles, and can be seen as twitching, fidgeting, jerking, and writhing movements.

Other symptoms of senile chorea can include:

  • Tremors and shaking
  • Difficulty walking and maintaining balance
  • Muscle spasms
  • Loss of coordination
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Memory loss
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

Causes of Senile Chorea

Senile chorea is caused by the degeneration of nerve cells in the brain. This nerve cell deterioration can be a result of aging as well as stroke, vascular dementia, brain tumors, and other conditions that can cause nerve damage.

In some cases, senile chorea can also be caused by medications or toxic substances. Long-term use of certain medications, such as neuroleptics, anti-convulsants, and lithium, can increase the risk of developing senile chorea.

Treatment for Senile Chorea

Unfortunately, there is no cure for senile chorea. However, there are some treatments that can help to manage its symptoms and prevent further progression. These treatments include medications, physical therapy, and lifestyle changes.

Medications, such as anticholinergics, dopamine agonists, and benzodiazepines, can help to reduce muscle contractions. Physical therapy can also be beneficial, as it can help to improve balance and coordination and make daily activities easier.

Making lifestyle changes, such as avoiding alcohol and quitting smoking, can also help to reduce the symptoms of senile chorea and improve overall health. Additionally, it is important to stay socially active and engage in activities that keep the mind stimulated.