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Huntington's chorea (disease)[hunt´ing-tunz]
a rare hereditary disease characterized by quick involuntary movements, speech disturbances, and mental deterioration due to degenerative changes in the cerebral cortex and basal ganglia; it appears in adulthood, usually between the ages of 30 and 45, and the patient's condition deteriorates over a period of about 15 years to total incapacitation and death. There is not currently any treatment that can cure this disorder, although sedatives and antianxiety agents may relieve symptoms in the early stages. As the disease progresses, admission to a psychiatric facility is usually necessary. Called also chronic or hereditary chorea.
Huntington's choreaan incurable degeneration of the human nervous system characterized by involuntary movements of the head, face and/or limbs, leading to eventual death. The disorder is caused by a single autosomal dominant gene on chromosome 4 (see DOMINANCE that shows delayed penetrance, fewer than 5% of cases being seen before the age of 25. Thus many individuals carrying the dominant allele have reproduced before their own gene shows itself; their progeny in turn may have to wait until middle age to discover if they have inherited the condition. Named after the American neurologist George Huntington (1851–1916).
A hereditary disease that typically appears in midlife, marked by gradual loss of brain function and voluntary movement. Some of its symptoms resemble those of schizophrenia.
Mentioned in: Schizophrenia