Introduction: Autosomal recessive spinocerebellar ataxia refers to a large group of diseases affecting the cerebellum and/or its connections, although they may also involve other regions of the nervous system. These diseases are accompanied by a wide range of systemic manifestations (cardiopathies, endocrinopathies, skeletal deformities, and skin abnormalities).
Development: This study reviews current knowledge of the most common forms of autosomal recessive spinocerebellar ataxia in order to provide tips that may facilitate diagnosis.
Conclusions: A thorough assessment of clinical phenotype (pure cerebellar or cerebellar-plus syndrome, with or without systemic manifestations), laboratory tests (vitamin E, acanthocytosis, albumin, cholesterol, phytanic acid, lactic acid, creatine kinase, cholestanol, coenzyme Q10, alpha-fetoprotein, copper, ceruloplasmin, chitotriosidase), nerve conduction studies (presence and type of neuropathy), and an magnetic resonance imaging study (presence of cerebellar atrophy, presence and location of signal alterations) may help establish a suspected diagnosis, which should be confirmed by detecting the underlying genetic mutation. A positive genetic test result is necessary to determine prognosis and provide adequate genetic counselling, and will also permit appropriate treatment of some entities (abetalipoproteinaemia, ataxia with vitamin E deficiency, Refsum disease, cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis, Niemann-Pick disease type C, Wilson disease). Without a genetic diagnosis, conducting basic research and therapeutic trials will not be possible.
Keywords: Ataxia de Friedreich; Ataxia telangiectasia; Ataxia-telangiectasia; Ataxias recesivas; Enfermedad de Niemann-Pick-tipo C; Enfermedad de Refsum; Enfermedad de Wilson; Friedreich ataxia; Niemann-Pick disease type C; Recessive ataxia; Refsum disease; Wilson disease.
Copyright © 2016 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.