Article

Etiology of musician's dystonia Familial or environmental?

Institute of Music Physiology and Musicians' Medicine, Hanover University of Music and Drama, Hanover, Germany.
Neurology (Impact Factor: 8.3). 05/2009; 72(14):1248-54. DOI: 10.1212/01.wnl.0000345670.63363.d1
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To test the hypothesis that there is familial aggregation of dystonia and other movement disorders in relatives of patients with musician's dystonia (MD) and to identify possible environmental triggers.
The families of 28 index patients with MD (14 with a reported positive family history of focal task-specific dystonia [FTSD] and 14 with no known family history [FH-]) underwent a standardized telephone screening interview using a modified version of the Beth Israel Dystonia Screen. Videotaped neurologic examinations were performed on all participants who screened positive and consensus diagnoses established. All patients were investigated for DYT1 dystonia and suitable families were tested for linkage to DYT7. All family members were administered questionnaires covering potential triggers of FTSD.
A diagnosis of dystonia was established in all 28 index patients and in 19/97 examined relatives (MD: n = 8, other FTSD: n = 9, other dystonias: n = 2), 5 of whom were members of FH- families. In 27 of the 47 affected individuals, additional forms of dystonia were seen; other movement disorders were observed in 23 patients. In total, 18 families were multiplex families with two to four affected members. Autosomal dominant inheritance was compatible in at least 12 families. The GAG deletion in DYT1 was absent in all patients. Linkage to DYT7 could be excluded in 1 of the 11 informative families. With respect to potential environmental triggers, there was no significant difference between patients with MD/FTSD compared to unaffected family members.
Our results suggest a genetic contribution to musician's dystonia with phenotypic variability including focal task-specific dystonia.

0 Bookmarks
 · 
132 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dystonias are defined as a joint sustained and involuntary contraction of agonist and antagonist muscles, which can cause torsion, repetitive abnormal involuntary movements, and/or abnormal postures. One special group of dystonias are those known as occupational, which include dystonia disorders triggered by a repetitive motor activity associated with a specific professional activity or task. Musicians are a population particularly vulnerable to these types of dystonia, which are presented as a loss of coordination and voluntary motor control movements highly trained in musical interpretation. Our aim is to describe a clinical series of focal dystonias in musicians evaluated and treated in our centre. Patients and methods Data is presented on a clinical series of 12 musicians with occupational dystonia. Their history and phenomenology are described, as well as well as their outcome after therapy. Results Demographic details: Mean age 34.8 ± 11.8 years, 10 males (83.3%) and 2 females (16.7%). Clinical history: History of trauma in dystonic segment, 6 patients (50%); family history of neurological diseases in first-degree relatives, 6 patients (50%); occupational history according to music category, 8 patients (66.6%) were classical musicians and 4 patients (33.3%) were popular musicians. Phenomenology The dystonia syndrome was characterised by having a mean age of onset of 28.2 ± 11.3 years (range 18-57 years). The segment affected was the hand (91.7%) in 11patients. Of all the musicians seen in the clinic, 9 of them (75%) received therapy. The majority of patients appeared to have triggering factors specific to musical execution and linked to the requirement of fine motor control. It should be mentioned that 50% of the musicians treated maintained their professional activity or position in the orchestra to which they belonged. Conclusions The majority of our phenomenological findings are consistent with those reported in the current literature. However, it is worth mentioning the presence of triggering factors attributed to the specific requirements of performing music, linked to the participation of fine motor control.
    Neurologia (Barcelona, Spain) 08/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.nrl.2013.12.024 · 1.35 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dystonias are defined as a joint sustained and involuntary contraction of agonist and antagonist muscles, which can cause torsion, repetitive abnormal involuntary movements, and/or abnormal postures. One special group of dystonias are those known as occupational, which include dystonia disorders triggered by a repetitive motor activity associated with a specific professional activity or task. Musicians are a population particularly vulnerable to these types of dystonia, which are presented as a loss of coordination and voluntary motor control movements highly trained in musical interpretation. Our aim is to describe a clinical series of focal dystonias in musicians evaluated and treated in our centre.
    Neurologia (Barcelona, Spain) 08/2014; · 1.35 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A model is presented showing how peripheral factors may cause a process of movement adaptation that leads to task-specific focal hand dystonia in musicians (FHDM). To acquire a playing technique, the hand must find effective and physiologically sustainable movements within a complex set of functional demands and anatomic, ergonomic, and physiological constraints. In doing so, individually discriminating constraints may become effective, such as limited anatomic independence of finger muscles/tendons, limited joint ranges of motion, or (subclinical) neuromusculoskeletal defects. These factors may, depending on the instrument-specific playing requirements, compromise or exclude functional playing movements. The controller (i.e., the brain) then needs to develop alternative motions to execute the task, which is called compensation. We hypothesize that, if this compensation process does not converge to physiologically sustainable muscle activation patterns that satisfy all constraints, compensation could increase indefinitely under the pressure of practice. Dystonic symptoms would become manifest when overcompensation occurs, resulting in motor patterns that fail in proper task execution. The model presented in this paper only concerns the compensatory processes preceding such overcompensations and does not aim to explain the nature of the dystonic motions themselves. While the model considers normal learning processes in the development of compensations, neurological predispositions could facilitate developing overcompensations or further abnormal motor programs. The model predicts that if peripheral factors are involved, FHDM symptoms would be preceded by long-term gradual changes in playing movements, which could be validated by prospective studies. Furthermore, the model implies that treatment success might be enhanced by addressing the conflict between peripheral factors and playing tasks before decompensating/retraining the affected movements.
    Biological Cybernetics 10/2014; 109(1). DOI:10.1007/s00422-014-0631-5 · 1.93 Impact Factor

Full-text

Download
35 Downloads
Available from
May 27, 2014