Tremor, Chorea and Other Involuntary Movement

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Physical Therapy


Many of the neuromuscular diseases that become more common with advancing age have signs and symptoms that include extraneous or involuntary movement. Some have little impact on functional ability whereas others can significantly compromise an older person's ability to safely or efficiently accomplish functional tasks. In order to select the most appropriate measures of impairment and function, and to develop a plan of care that will enhance safety and function, rehabilitation professionals need to be able to differentiate between the possible causes, characteristics and management of the various involuntary movements and dyskinesias that are encoimtered when working with older adults. In this section, we define the most common types of dyskinesia, present a scheme for classification of movement dysfunction and review the evidence (such as it is) for examination and functional interventions in individuals who exhibit involuntary movement.