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Started repetitive movements of his fingers and hands. Tapping feet and having severe anxiety attacks. Need help?

Nov 2013
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Practicing since : 1994
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my husband is 70 yrs old. about a month ago, he started repetitive movements of his fingers and hands, he is now tapping his feet and is having severe anxiety attacks. Also he seems to lick his lips repeatedly. It is getting worse by the day, and as he is an entertainer, cannot work at present. He has been treated for panic attacks and clinical depression since his early 20's. We lost our son in the past few years, and his health is deteriorating. Don't know where this involuntary dance-like movements of the hands is coming from. We need help. Thank you, XXXXX
Posted Thu, 26 Sep 2013 in Brain and Spine
Answered by Dr. Sudhir Kumar 8 hours later
Brief Answer:
These movements could be choreiform movements

Detailed Answer:

Thank you for posting your query. I can understand your husband's disability on account of his involuntary movements.

Based on the description, these involuntary dance like movements seem to be due to chorea, referred to as choreiform movements. The commonest cause in this age could be brain ischemia (lack of blood flow to the brain). A brain MRI would help in confirming the diagnosis. Treatment would consist of using haloperidol tablets.

If he has taken psychiatry medications, such as olanzapine, or other anti psychotics, then, these involuntary movements can also be drug induced dyskinesia. In that case, using trihexiphenydyl tablets would help.

In addition, thyroid problems should also be excluded.

I hope it helps. Please get back if you have any more queries.

Best wishes,
Dr Sudhir Kumar MD DM (Neurology) XXXXXXX Consultant Neurologist
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