• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

huntingtons disease

Extracts from this document...


Huntington 's disease Introduction Huntington's disease (HD) is a hereditary disease for which there is no cure. Dr Miha Likar (1979) stated, "that the onset of this rare hereditary disease does not appear until middle age. Muscular spasms become progressingly more debilitating and the disease is invariably fatal." Huntington's is a neurological disease, which damages the nerve cells in the brain. This causes degeneration, deterioration and gradual loss of function of areas in the brain. It affects movement, cognition, perception, awareness, thinking and behavioural problems. Men and women are equally likely to develop Huntington's, it is estimated that between, 6500 to 8000 people have the disease in Britain. Normally it does not present itself until the age of 30 to 50 and many people are unaware that they have the disease and that they may have passed it on to their children. ...read more.


They can also have a lack of inhibitions, showing a lack of interest in personal hygiene. Communication Huntington's affects all communication, cognition and speech. People with this disease often have difficulty putting thoughts into words and slur their speech. They understand what you are saying but cannot necessarily communicate that they understand or respond too you. Impaired breathing can also make speech and articulation difficult. In the later stages of Huntington,'s the person will become totally dependant and require full nursing care. Causes Huntington's is caused by an error in the genetic code that programmes the way the body works. The mistake lies in a defective gene on chromosome 4; this gene produces a protein called huntingin. The pattern of inheritance in Huntington's is called autosomal dominant inheritance. The defect affects the production of certain brain enzymes, these proteins are involved in making essential brain chemicals. ...read more.


People with the disease need to have a high-calorie diet. Help with eating and drinking, food should be easy to chew digest and swallow. In the later stages, alternative feeding methods such as a naso-gastric tube may be necessary. An occupational therapist can help with mobility and day-to-day activities. Grants are available from social services for help in adapting your house and making the environment safe. Research There is no way to prevent the disease, and there is currently no cure available. Research is ongoing and we are researching better ways in trying to understand the cause of the nerve cell death and trying to identify a way of interfering with the faulty gene so it does not cause Huntington's Research is also being undertaken in creating a drug that will slow the progress of the disease. It may be many years before we are any closer to discovering a new effective treatment for Huntington's disease. Teresa Llewellyn Task 6 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Healthcare section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Healthcare essays

  1. human inheritance

    The hormone stimulates the secretion of two gonadotropin hormones from the pituitary gland, these are luteinising hormone (LH) and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). Age: Physical and psychic maturity in women ideally means that the ages between twenty five and thirty are the best ages to get pregnant and give birth.

  2. Communicable and Non-Communicable Disease: Tuberculosis and Cystic Fibrosis

    In such instances, measures which could minimise an individual's risk of contracting TB include opening windows to ensure adequate ventilation and maintaining a healthy diet, exercise and sleep pattern with a view to boosting the immune system.32 Such measures

  1. Health and Disease

    This information is not made public so it is still partly confidential. Giving information - when information is given to other professionals it should be passed on with the understanding that they will keep it confidential. It is also important that if you meet a person that you don't know you ask for identity before passing any information on.

  2. investigating disease

    continuously exposed to airborne particles, such as bacteria and viruses which can cause lung disorders such as pneumonia. Diseases are not always caused by micro-organisms. Disease can be degenerative, inherited from parents, deficiency related or associated with lifestyle or the environment.

  1. Strageties for prevention of disease

    The widening of this gap over the past 20 years reflects a steeper decline in smoking prevalence among non-manual classes compared with manual classes (HDA Cancer Prevention, 2002). The social class differentials in smoking are reflected in the social gradients of deaths caused by smoking.

  2. Heart Disease

    Iatrogenic Diabetes or Type 2 Diabetes The definition of iatrogenic diabetes is, "Diabetes mellitus brought on by administration of drugs such as corticosteroids, certain diuretics, or birth control pills" (Venes529). This disease is only applicable if Jim is taking thiszide-type diuretic and a beta-blocker (Rafael).

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work