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Definition Return to top
Basal ganglia dysfunction is a problem with the basal ganglia, the deep brain structures that help start and control movement.
Causes Return to top
Conditions that cause injury to the brain can damage the basal ganglia. Such conditions include:
Many brain disorders are associated with basal ganglia dysfunction. They include:
This list may not be all-inclusive.
Symptoms Return to top
Damage to the basal ganglia cells may cause problems with one's ability to control speech, movement, and posture. A person with basal ganglia dysfunction may difficulty starting, stopping, or sustaining movement. Depending on which area is affected, there may also be problems with memory and other thought processes.
In general, symptoms vary and may include:
Exams and Tests Return to top
The health care provider will perform a complete physical and neurological exam. Depending on the results, blood tests and imaging studies of the brain may be needed.
Treatment Return to top
Treatment depends on the cause of the disorder.
Outlook (Prognosis) Return to top
How well a person does depends on the cause of the dysfunction. Some causes are reversible, while others require lifelong treatment.
When to Contact a Medical Professional Return to top
Call your health care provider if you have any abnormal or involuntary movements, unexplainable falls, or if you or others notice that you are shaky or slow.Update Date: 9/22/2008 Updated by: Daniel B. Hoch, PhD, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.