Dysarthria in Adults

Many neurologic illnesses, diseases, and disorders—both acquired and congenital—can cause dysarthria. Listed below are examples of some specific etiologies, grouped into broad categories (Duffy, 2013).

  • Congenital—cerebral palsy, Chiari malformation, congenital suprabulbar palsy, syringomyelia, syringobulbia
  • Degenerative diseases—amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, progressive supranuclear palsy, cerebellar degeneration, corticobasal degeneration, multiple system atrophy, Friedreich's ataxia, Huntington's disease, olivopontocerebellar atrophy, spinocerebellar ataxia, ataxia telangiectasia
  • Demyelinating and inflammatory diseases—multiple sclerosis, encephalitis, Guillain-Barré and associated autoimmune syndromes, meningitis, multifocal leukoencephalopathy
  • Infectious diseases—acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, herpes zoster, infectious encephalopathy, central nervous system tuberculosis, poliomyelitis
  • Neoplastic diseases—central nervous system tumors; cerebral, cerebellar, or brainstem tumors; paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration
  • Other neurologic conditions—hydrocephalus, Meige syndrome, myoclonic epilepsy, neuroacanthocytosis, radiation necrosis, sarcoidosis, seizure disorder, Tourette's syndrome, Chorea gravidarum
  • Toxic/metabolic diseases—botulism, carbon monoxide poisoning, central pontine myelinolysis, heavy metal or chemical toxicity, hepatocerebral degeneration, hypothyroidism, hypoxic encephalopathy, lithium toxicity, Wilson's disease
  • Trauma—traumatic brain injury, chronic traumatic encephalopathy, neck trauma, neurosurgical/postoperative trauma, skull fracture
  • Vascular Diseases—stroke (hemorrhagic or nonhemorrhagic), Moyamoya disease, anoxic or hypoxic encephalopathy, arteriovenous malformations

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