Huntington’s disease is a progressive brain disorder caused by a single defective gene on chromosome 4 — one of the 23 human chromosomes that carry a person’s entire genetic code.
This defect is “dominant,” meaning that anyone who inherits it from a parent with Huntington’s will eventually develop the disease.
Symptoms of Huntington’s disease usually develop between ages 30 and 50, but they can appear as early as age 2 or as late as 80. The hallmark symptom of Huntington’s disease is the uncontrolled movement of the arms, legs, head, face, and upper body. Huntington’s disease also causes a decline in thinking and reasoning skills, including memory, concentration, judgment, and ability to plan and organize.
Huntington’s disease brain changes lead to alterations in mood, especially depression, anxiety, and uncharacteristic anger and irritability. Another common symptom is obsessive-compulsive behavior, leading a person to repeat the same question or activity over and over.
For more information please visit: Huntington’s Disease Society of America https://hdsa.org/