About Huntington's Disease
Huntington's disease is a brain disorder that is typically hereditary -- only 1 percent to 3 percent of cases develop without any family history. The disease is caused by a defect in a gene on chromosome number 4. This gene is known as the Huntington disease (HD) gene.
Huntington's disease can cause a number of physical, mental, and emotional problems. For example, early symptoms include:
- Mood swings
- Problems with memory.
Intellectual tasks often become more difficult as the condition progresses.
A genetic test is available to make or confirm a diagnosis of Huntington's disease. The same genetic test is also available as a screening procedure, which allows people to be tested even if they have no symptoms.
At this time, there is no cure for Huntington's disease. Treatment focuses on managing the symptoms.
(Click Huntington's Disease to learn more about this condition and its history.)