What EEG findings are characteristic of Huntington disease?

Updated: Oct 09, 2019
  • Author: Eli S Neiman, DO, FACN; Chief Editor: Selim R Benbadis, MD  more...
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Huntington disease is a genetic condition characterized by movement disorder (primarily chorea), cognitive impairment, and psychotic features. The degree of such symptoms varies widely. The EEG changes show gradual and progressive slowing over time. The amplitude also attenuates as the disease progresses. About 30% of the patients have very-low-voltage EEGs, with amplitudes below 10 μV. Hyperventilation as a rule does not increase the background voltage as it usually does in healthy subjects. About 3% of the patients show epileptiform activity; they tend to be juvenile cases.

The EEG has not been proven to be of any predictive value in identifying future affected family members. Genetic testing is far more useful.

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