Multiple system atrophy with orthostatic hypotension is the current classification for a neurological disorder that was once called Shy-Drager syndrome. A progressive disorder of the central and autonomic nervous systems, it is characterized by orthostatic hypotension (an excessive drop in blood pressure when standing up) which causes dizziness or fainting. Multiple system atrophy can occur without orthostatic hypotension, but instead have urinary involvement (urgency/incontinence). Doctors classify the disorder into 3 types: the Parkinsonian-type includes symptoms of Parkinson's disease such as slow movement, stiff muscles, and tremor; the cerebellar-type, which causes problems with coordination and speech; and the combined-type, which includes symptoms of both parkinsonism and cerebellar failure. Problems with urinary incontinence, constipation, and sexual impotence in men happen early in the course of the disease. Other symptoms include generalized weakness, double vision or other vision disturbances, difficulty breathing and swallowing, sleep disturbances, and decreased sweating. Because the disease resembles others, a correct diagnosis may take years.
|Shy-Drager/Multiple System Atrophy Support Group, Inc.
8311 Brier Creek Parkway
Raleigh, NC 27617
firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
|National Dysautonomia Research Foundation
P.O. Box 301
Red Wing, MN 55066-0301
Office of Communications and Public Liaison
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
National Institutes of Health
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Last updated September 30, 2011