Spasticity is an increase in muscle tone that can cause discomfort, limit movement, reduce function and make caregiving more difficult. It’s typically related to a neurological condition, such as stroke, spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis or brain injury. It can complicate even the simplest tasks, such as eating, dressing and walking.
Symptoms of Spasticity
Everyone experiences spasticity differently. Symptoms may vary from person to person and day to day. The most common symptoms of spasticity are:
- Exaggerated reflexes
- Involuntary movements
- Muscle spasms
- Rapid muscle contractions
- Tight, stiff muscles
- Fixed joints called contractures
The symptoms can be distressing, and often interfere with the enjoyment of life by complicating even simple tasks like eating, dressing, walking and talking.
Spasticity Is Treatable
Spasticity may be an unavoidable complication of certain neurological conditions, but that doesn’t mean you have to surrender to it. If spasticity is interfering with your usual activities, it’s time to seek help. Medical care may not fully cure the symptoms, but our experts can help you preserve movement and restore function.
The effects of spasticity can vary from person to person, so the best treatment plans are individually tailored. Our Comprehensive Spasticity Management Program offers the most experienced care available in the region for evaluating and treating the entire range of neurological conditions that cause spasticity. Our team of experts will thoroughly evaluate you and work with you to maximize your mobility and enhance your quality of life — whether it’s been two months or 20 years since you first developed spasticity.
Our health care professionals provide a vast array of treatment options, including oral medication, skilled therapy, temporary nerve blocks, botulinum toxin injections and phenol injections, intrathecal baclofen pumps and orthopaedic surgery. Because our team specializes in the management of spasticity, they are experts in each of these treatment options and perform thousands of spasticity management procedures each year.
A Team Approach — Experience Counts
Our Comprehensive Spasticity Management Program is one of the longest standing and most comprehensive in the area and offers you advantages not found elsewhere, including:
- Physician specialists who treat spasticity by using their advanced training and decades of experience to identify causes and highly effective treatments
- Individualized, coordinated care with expertise in the areas of physical medicine and rehabilitation (physiatry), neurology, neurosurgery, orthopaedic surgery, speech-language pathology, psychology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, social work and nursing
- Decision making and treatment planning that actively includes the patient and their family
- An academic medical center setting that encourages research to help find the best ways to treat spasticity
Our physicians, therapists and nurses understand that spasticity can affect every aspect of your life. They pool their experience and expertise to develop customized plans of care. They work with you and your family to develop realistic, obtainable goals, and provide education and support to people coping with spasticity.
Research Helps Offer the Latest Treatments for Spasticity
The Comprehensive Spasticity Management program is the only one in the area associated with an academic medical center. Our physicians are actively involved in research; they are dedicated to finding solutions to spasticity-related problems and to providing patients with access to the newest treatments and clinical trials.