Multiple system atrophy
Symptoms usually start between 50 and 60 years of age, but can start any time after 30.
Manydifferent functions of the body can be affected, including the urinary system, blood pressure control and muscle movement.
The range ofsymptoms is described below, although it is important to note that a person with multiple system atrophy won't necessarily developall of these.
Men and women with multiple system atrophy will usually have one or more of the following bladder symptoms:
Men with multiple system atrophywill usually experience erectile dysfunction (the inability to get and maintain an erection),although this is a common problem that many men without the disease develop.
It's common for someone with multiple system atrophy to feel lightheaded, dizzy and faint when they suddenly sit or stand up.This is because their blood pressuredrops when they become upright,which is known as postural hypotension.
When you stand up after lying down,your blood vessels usually narrow quickly and your heart rate increases slightly, topreventblood pressure dropping and maintain blood flow to the brain. This function is carried out automatically by the autonomic nervous system.
However, because this doesn't work properly in people with multiple system atrophy, this control is lost.
A part of the brain called the cerebellum becomes damaged in multiple system atrophy, which can make the person clumsy and unsteady when walking, and can also cause slurred speech.
These problems are collectivelyknown as cerebellar ataxia .
A person with multiple system atrophy typically has much slowermovements than normal. This is referred to as "bradykinesia" and can make everyday tasks difficult. Movement is hard to initiate, and they often have a distinctive slow, shuffling walk with very small steps.
Some people may also have stiffness and tension in the muscles, which can make it even more difficult to move around and can result in painful muscle cramps ( dystonia ).
The above symptoms are typical of Parkinson's disease, but unfortunately the medication used to relieve these symptoms in people with Parkinson's disease (levodopa therapy) is not veryeffective for people with multiple system atrophy.
People with multiple system atrophy may also have:
Multiple system atrophy is a disease of the nervous system that leads to premature death. It results in parts of the brain and spinal cord gradually becoming more damaged over time.
Symptoms usually start between 50 and 60 years of age, but can start any time after 30. Manydifferent functions of the body can be affected, including the urinary system, blood pressure control and m
The cause of multiple system atrophy is not well understood. It doesnt appear to be inherited there's no evidence that an affected person's children will develop it. However, it's possible that bot
Multiple system atrophy is estimated to affect around 5 in every 100,000 people worldwide. There are almost 3,000 people in the UK living with the disease.
There is no specific test to diagnose multiple system atrophy. A diagnosis can usually be made based on the symptoms, although it can potentially be confused with Parkinson's disease. The box on thi
Unfortunately, there is nocure for multiple system atrophy and no way of slowing the disease's progression. People with multiple system atrophy typically live for six to nine years after symptoms sta
If you're a carer of someone with multiple system atrophy, it's important to remember that you're not alone and that there is support available. By law, you're entitled to a free health and social car
If you have been diagnosed with multiple system atrophy, your treatment and medical care will probably be the first thing on your mind. However, there are other aspects of your life to consider, and i
If you have multiple system atrophy, your clinical team will pass information about you on to the National Congenital Anomaly and Rare Diseases Registration Service (NCARDRS). This helps scientists l
Multiple System Atrophy Trust The Multiple System Atrophy Trust is the UK's main charity supporting people with the disease, as well as their families, carers and the health professionals treating t