Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a movement disorder that occurs from damage to certain nerve cells in the brain.
Dementia - nuchal dystonia; Richardson-Steele-Olszewski syndrome; Palsy - progressive supranuclear
PSP is a condition that causes symptoms similar to those of Parkinson disease.
It involves damage to many cells of the brain. Many areas are affected, including the part of the brainstem where cells that control eye movement are located. The area of the brain that controls steadiness when you walk is also affected. The frontal lobes of the brain are also affected, leading to personality changes.
The cause of the damage to the brain cells is unknown. PSP gets worse over time.
People with PSP have deposits in brain tissues that look like those found in people with Alzheimer disease. There is a loss of tissue in most areas of the brain and in some parts of the spinal cord.
The disorder is most often seen in people over 60 years old, and is somewhat more common in men.
Symptoms may include any of the following:
The goal of treatment is to control symptoms. There is no known cure for PSP.
Medicines such as levodopa may be tried. These drugs raise the level of a brain chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is involved in the control of movement. The medicines may reduce some symptoms, such as rigid limbs or slow movements for a time. But they are usually not as effective as they are for Parkinson disease.
Many people with PSP will eventually need around-the-clock care and monitoring as they lose brain functions.
Adam Boxer is a Neurologist in San Francisco, California. Boxer has been practicing medicine for over 24 years and is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Progressive Supranuclear Palsy Atypical. He is also highly rated in 22 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Frontotemporal Dementia, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy Atypical, and Supranuclear Ophthalmoplegia. He is licensed to treat patients in California.
Gunter Hoglinger practices in Hannover, Germany. Hoglinger is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Progressive Supranuclear Palsy Atypical. They are also highly rated in 17 other conditions, according to our data. Their top areas of expertise are Supranuclear Ophthalmoplegia, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy Atypical, and Brown Syndrome.
Irene Litvan is a Neurologist in San Diego, California. Litvan has been practicing medicine for over 43 years and is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Progressive Supranuclear Palsy Atypical. She is also highly rated in 25 other conditions, according to our data. Her top areas of expertise are Parkinson's Disease, Supranuclear Ophthalmoplegia, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, and Progressive Supranuclear Palsy Atypical. She is licensed to treat patients in Kentucky. Litvan is currently accepting new patients.
Treatment sometimes can reduce symptoms for a while, but the condition will get worse. Brain function will decline over time. Death commonly occurs in 5 to 7 years.
Newer drugs are being studied to treat this condition.
Complications of PSP include:
Call your provider if you often fall, and if you have a stiff neck/body, and vision problems.
Also, call if a loved one has been diagnosed with PSP and the condition has declined so much that you can no longer care for the person at home.
Published Date: June 23, 2020
Published By: Amit M. Shelat, DO, FACP, FAAN, Attending Neurologist and Assistant Professor of Clinical Neurology, Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, 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.
Jankovic J. Parkinson disease and other movement disorders. In: Daroff RB, Jankovic J, Mazziotta JC, Pomeroy SL, eds. Bradley's Neurology in Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 96.
Ling H. Clinical approach to progressive supranuclear palsy. J Mov Disord. 2016;9(1):3-13. PMID: 26828211 pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26828211/.
National Institute of Neurological Disorders website. Progressive supranuclear palsy fact sheet. www.ninds.nih.gov/Disorders/Patient-Caregiver-Education/Fact-Sheets/Progressive-Supranuclear-Palsy-Fact-Sheet. Updated March 17, 2020. Accessed August 19, 2020.