Epilepsy & Seizures
Ambiguous paroxysmal events
Jun. 20, 2023
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Essential tremor (also known as benign essential tremor and familial tremor) is a common movement disorder that involves a tremor (unwanted and uncontrolled shaking) in both hands and arms during action and when standing still. It also may affect your head and voice and how you walk. However, essential tremor is not the same as Parkinson's disease. There is no cure for essential tremor, but treatments are available to ease symptoms.
Neurological symptoms may include:
Risk factors include:
The exact cause of essential tremor is unknown. Studies show essential tremor is accompanied by a mild degeneration of the cerebellum, which is the part of your brain that controls movement. In some people, certain medications can cause tremor. Heightened emotion, stress, fever, physical exhaustion, or low blood sugar may trigger tremors or increase their severity.
Although essential tremor is not life-threatening, it can make it harder to perform daily tasks and is embarrassing to some people. Symptomatic drug therapy may include beta blocking drugs like propranolol, anti-seizure drugs like primidone, and tranquilizers. Eliminating tremor "triggers" such as caffeine and other stimulants from the diet is often recommended.
How can I or my loved one help improve care for people with essential tremor?
Consider participating in a clinical trial so clinicians and scientists can learn more about essential tremor and related disorders. Clinical research uses human volunteers to help researchers learn more about a disorder and perhaps find better ways to safely detect, treat, or prevent disease.
All types of volunteers are needed—those who are healthy or may have an illness or disease—of all different ages, sexes, races, and ethnicities to ensure that study results apply to as many people as possible, and that treatments will be safe and effective for everyone who will use them.
For information about participating in clinical research visit NIH Clinical Research Trials and You. Learn about clinical trials currently looking for people with essential tremor at Clinicaltrials.gov.
Where can I find more information about essential tremor?
Information may be available from the following resources:
Diann Shaddox Foundation for Essential Tremor
International Essential Tremor Foundation
Phone: 913-341-3880 or 888-387-366
Content source: https://www.ninds.nih.gov/health-information/disorders/essential-tremor Accessed July 12, 2023.
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