Read about how musicians are affected by dystonia in Ongoing Research 2006/2007 - Focal Hand Dystonia affecting musicians in Scotland. It appears that focal dystonia is a condition musicians are particularly susceptible to. Using repetitive almost simultaneous finger and hand movements may trigger dystonia in musicians. One professional musician appearing in the DVD, Twisted, was unable to play piano for 30 years due to dystonic muscular spasms. Following treatment, botulinum toxin injections for occupational dystonia, he was again able to play piano.
Writers cramp, also referred to as task specific dystonia, is the name of one type of dystonia affecting many musicians. This task specific dystonia triggered by specific action or movement causes fingers, hand, and or forearm muscles to spasm. When the musician stops using those muscles, their hand and or arm spasms tend to relax. This form of dystonia is not only experienced by musicians but also by other people who are required to use specific, repetitive movements.
The linked Dystonia bulletin board, Musicians with dystonia bulletin board and Spasmodic dysphonia bulletin board, as well as the Blepharospasm bulletin board, are all available to dystonia sufferers, their families and or carers. Wherever you are, if you have dystonia support is readily available.
Sue Bayliss. Cairns, Australia.