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Slow saccades in cerebellar disease.


ABSTRACT: Eye movements are frequently considered diagnostic markers indicating involvement of the cerebellum. Impaired amplitude of saccades (saccade dysmetria), impaired gaze holding function (horizontal or downbeat nystagmus), and interrupted (choppy) pursuit are typically considered hallmarks of cerebellar disorders. While saccade dysmetria is a frequently considered abnormality, the velocity of saccades are rarely considered part of the constellation of cerebellar involvement. Reduced saccade velocity, frequently called "slow saccades" are typically seen in a classic disorder of the midbrain called progressive supranuclear palsy. It is also traditionally diagnostic of spinocerebellar ataxia type 2. In addition to its common causes, the slowness of vertical saccades is not rare in cerebellar disorders. Frequently this phenomenology is seen in multisystem involvement that substantially involves the cerebellum. In this review we will first discuss the physiological basis and the biological need for high saccade velocities. In subsequent sections we will discuss disorders of cerebellum that are known to cause slowing of saccades. We will then discuss possible pathology and novel therapeutic strategies.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6337813 | BioStudies | 2019-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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