Spasticity refers to abnormal muscle contraction that is produced by an injury to the brain and spinal cord. People diagnosed with spasticity experience muscle stiffness, painful spasms, weakness, fatigue, and poor coordination, that can make it hard to walk and take part in normal daily activities, like bathing, eating, and even sleeping. Spasticity is not a disease in itself; it is a symptom of any condition that damages the brain or spinal cord including:
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Cerebral Palsy
- Spinal Cord Injury
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Hereditary Spastic Paraparesis
- Brain Tumor
What are the symptoms of spasticity?
- Abnormal increase in muscle tone that may be described as stiff, tight, or painful
- Difficulty moving joints or relaxing your muscles
- Overactive reflexes
- Muscle spasms or abnormal movements
- Limited or loss of range of motion
In treating spasticity, we always have a specific goal or goals. Goals of treatment may include relief of pain, improvement in function, or preventing contractures. Our patients receive a customized treatment plan, which may include:
- Physical or occupational therapy.
- Oral medication. Your spasticity specialist may prescribe one or more medications to alleviate your symptoms.
- Botulinum Toxin Injections. Botulinum Toxin is injected directly into the affected muscles, providing about three to four months of relief of spasticity.
- Phenol Injections. Phenol is injected at the neuromuscular junction for longer relief of spasticity.
- Intrathecal Baclofen pump. Evaluation, recommendation, and management of implantable pump for chronic spasticity.
We can help
DENT Neurologic Institute is among the largest, most comprehensive neurology practices in the United States. We are focused on providing superior clinical care, advanced diagnostic services, clinical research, and education.
The breadth and scope of our clinical expertise has allowed the creation of our specialty clinics. Every clinic has the same mission: to provide a disease-specific approach to treatment. This unique and integrated model has strengthened our standards of care, quality measurement, outcomes, and participation in clinical research.