Acute cerebellar ataxia is sudden, uncoordinated muscle movement due to disease or injury to the cerebellum. This is the area in the brain that controls muscle movement. Ataxia means loss of muscle coordination, especially of the hands and legs.
Cerebellar ataxia; Ataxia - acute cerebellar; Cerebellitis; Post-varicella acute cerebellar ataxia; PVACA
Acute cerebellar ataxia in children, particularly younger than age 3, may occur several days or weeks after an illness caused by a virus.
Viral infections that may cause this include chickenpox, Coxsackie disease, Epstein-Barr, echovirus, among others.
Other causes of acute cerebellar ataxia include:
Ataxia may affect movement of the middle part of the body from the neck to the hip area (the trunk) or the arms and legs (limbs).
When the person is sitting, the body may move side-to-side, back-to-front, or both. Then the body quickly moves back to an upright position.
When a person with ataxia of the arms reaches for an object, the hand may sway back and forth.
Common symptoms of ataxia include:
Treatment depends on the cause:
Susan Perlman is a Neurologist in Los Angeles, California. Dr. Perlman has been practicing medicine for over 47 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of Acute Cerebellar Ataxia. She is also highly rated in 46 other conditions, according to our data. Her top areas of expertise are Acute Cerebellar Ataxia, Spinocerebellar Ataxia, Hereditary Ataxia, and Friedreich Ataxia. She is licensed to treat patients in California. Dr. Perlman is currently accepting new patients.
Brent Fogel is a Neurologist in Los Angeles, California. Dr. Fogel has been practicing medicine for over 19 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of Acute Cerebellar Ataxia. He is also highly rated in 30 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Acute Cerebellar Ataxia, Drug Induced Dyskinesia, Spinocerebellar Ataxia, and Olivopontocerebellar Atrophy. He is licensed to treat patients in California. Dr. Fogel is currently accepting new patients.
Orlando Barsottini is in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Barsottini is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Acute Cerebellar Ataxia. They are also highly rated in 45 other conditions, according to our data. Their top areas of expertise are Acute Cerebellar Ataxia, Drug Induced Dyskinesia, Olivopontocerebellar Atrophy, and Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 1.
People whose condition was caused by a recent viral infection should make a full recovery without treatment in a few months. Strokes, bleeding, or infections may cause permanent symptoms.
In rare cases, movement or behavioral disorders may persist.
Call your provider if any symptoms of ataxia appear.
Published Date : January 28, 2021
Published By : Evelyn O. Berman, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at University of Rochester, Rochester, NY. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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Mink JW. Movement disorders. In: Kliegman RM, St. Geme JW, Blum NJ, Shah SS, Tasker RC, Wilson KM, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 21st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 615.