Restless Leg Syndrome is a disorder that causes the sufferer to experience uncomfortable sensations [...]
Movement Disorder: What is Movement Disorder?
Movement disorder is a general term used to describe a variety of abnormal movements of the body that typically have a neurological basis. Changes in the coordination and speed of voluntary movement are common symptoms. However, there may also be an involvement of involuntary movement with this disorder.
Hyperkinetic movement and hypokinetic movement are the two types of movement associated with these disorders disorder. Hyperkinetic movement disorders are characterized by a significant and excessive amount of motor activity, and can involve both voluntary and involuntary movement. Hypokinetic movement disorders are those in which there is an abnormally reduced amount of intentional motor activity.
Movement Disorder and Brain Function:
Researchers have determined that many movement disorders are caused by and/or associated with diseases in various parts of the brain, including the substantia nigra, the subthalamic nucleus, the globus pallidus, the striatum, and the basal ganglia.
fMRI as well as qEEG have shown that the brain is affected in appropriately predicting sensory signals. Many times there are other issues of increased beta as well as the slower processes of increased theta, thus compounding the problem. Fortunately, neurofeedback can directly affect hypo/hyper activity of brain wave function, thereby often reducing or eliminating the symptoms of many of these disorders.
With the qEEG or Brain Map as an assessment tool, we can see the electrical activity of the brain. We can then determine where and how the dysregulation occurs allowing us to develop treatment protocols to put the brain back into balance without medication.
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Movement Disorder and Common Symptoms:
Although not comprehensive, some common symptoms include:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Eyesight changes
- Paralysis or partial paralysis in the legs or arms
- Trouble speaking
- Difficulty feeling ordinary pain
- Urinary retention
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Movement Disorder: Case Study
A Neurofeedback practitioner in Australia reports the following remarkable story:
Almost two years ago I began neurofeedback training a then ten-year-old with a movement disorder, Myotonic Dystrophy, who had attention problems, low muscle tone, low energy, poor speech, sleep maintenance issues and sleep apnea. After about sixty sessions, this youngster showed greatly increased energy, improved concentration and speech, normalization of his sleep cycle and no sleep apnea. A formal sleep study documented normalization of his blood oxygen saturation levels when compared with studies conducted prior to Neurofeedback training, and confirmed that the sleep apnea issue had been resolved.
About six months later his mother called to say that he had lost all of the gains we had made with the Neurofeedback. So he came back in twice per week and we were again able to attain the same level of improvements. We now maintain those gains with sessions once per week during school terms. Myotonic Dystrophy is a degenerative condition in which the patient’s health is expected to gradually deteriorate, so it seems this youngster needs ongoing Neurofeedback training to maintain gains and postpone the inevitable deterioration.
Now for the really good news!
Because of this well-known process of deterioration, medical specialists had previously predicted that this boy would be in a wheelchair by now. However, he is now twelve years old and a few months back was encouraged to try out for “Special Olympics.” This is a program here in Australia in which children with disabilities are encouraged to take part in track and field events.
The boy’s mother told me last week that he is now running times in the 400 meters that would have qualified him to run in the open division at the 2000 Sydney Para Olympic Games. He is now being groomed to compete in several track events and the high jump in Athens in 2004. So much for the wheelchair!
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The following is a case involving a female with a non-specific movement disorder:
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