UCSF Memory and Aging Center
Dalvi AI, Bloomfield AS. Parkinson-Plus Syndromes. Emedicine Journal, February 7, 2012. Available at: http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1154074-overview Accessed on: 09/01/2012.
Additional symptoms of corticobasal degeneration may include a slight tremor while in particular positions (postural tremor) or while performing a task (action tremor), and/or exaggerated slowness of movements (bradykinesia) or lack of movement (akinesia). Sudden, brief involuntary muscle spasms that cause jerky movements (myoclonus) may also occur. In some cases, limb dystonia may be present. Dystonia is a general term for a group of neurological conditions characterized by involuntary muscle contractions that force a certain part(s) of the body into abnormal, sometimes painful, movements and positions (postures). Affected individuals may also develop contractures, a condition in which a joint becomes permanently fixed in a bent (flexed) or straightened (extended) position, completely or partial restricting the movement of the affected joint.
A report offering encouragement, advice, and support to those caring for a loved one with corticobasal degeneration, entitled the CBGD Caregivers Report, is available free of charge to all who would find it helpful. It can be downloaded at www.tornadodesign.com/cbgd.
Physical therapy may be beneficial in maintaining the mobility and range of motion of stiffened, rigid joints and prevent the development of contractures. Occupational therapy is beneficial in assessing the safety of an affected individual's home and in determining what adaptive medical equipment may increase a person's independence. Speech therapy may be beneficial in treating individuals where speech and language abnormalities associated with corticobasal degeneration. Affected individuals may need devices such as a cane or walker to assist in walking.
The exact, underlying cause of corticobasal degeneration is unknown. Researchers believe that multiple different factors contribute to the development of the disorder including various genetic and environmental factors as well as factors related to aging.
Lee SE, Rabinovici GD, Mayo MC, et al. Clinicopathological correlations in corticobasal degeneration. Ann Neurol. 2011;70:327-340. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21823158
Moving around might also get harder as time goes on. Symptoms that start in one limb or on one side of the body might move slowly to other limbs or to the other side of the body. In late stages of CBS, people may have some personality changes. They might become obsessive or impulsive, or they might say inappropriate things. Some people may also develop memory problems, such as misplacing objects or repeating questions.
There are various ways to help a person with CBS. Speech therapy may help improve communication between people with CBS and others. Physical therapy and stretching exercises may improve some movement difficulties.
Corticobasal syndrome (CBS) is a condition that causes changes in movement, language skills or both. CBS may start with movement problems, such as stiff muscles on one side of the body involving the arm, leg, or both. People with CBS may describe having a hard time controlling their arm or leg. Some people with CBS have language problems first and may develop movement problems over time. Thinking and behavior changes may happen either at the beginning or later in the disease.
What Happens in CBS?
Later in the disease, language problems may begin. People may have increasing trouble finding the right word, naming objects and people or just getting the words out. Their reading skills might also get worse, and writing might become especially difficult if the movement symptoms affect the hands.
The first sign of CBS is usually trouble with movement. The symptoms may begin in one hand, arm or leg. The limb may feel stiff and might shake. A person with CBS may experience a slight change in the feeling of the limb and may have trouble making the limb move, or the movement may be slower than usual.
The cause of CBS is unknown. Scientists know that in some people with CBS, there is a large build-up of a protein called tau. Tau occurs normally in the brain, but we do not yet understand what causes it to build up in large amounts. Others may have a large build-up of amyloid plaques similar to those seen in people with Alzheimer’s disease. As more and more proteins build up in the nerve cells, the cells lose their ability to function and eventually die. This causes affected parts of the brain to shrink.
Though there is no cure for CBS yet, there are medications that help manage the symptoms. These medications are called cholinesterase inhibitors, and they can help if a person with CBS is having memory problems, especially with CBS symptoms that look like Alzheimer’s disease. Some examples of these medicines are donepezil (Aricept ® ), rivastigmine (Exelon ® ) and galantamine (Razadyne ® ). If a person with CBS has movement symptoms they may be treated with medications used for Parkinson’s disease, such as levodopa or carbidopa, although the effect of these medications is questionable.
But first, what is CBD? Cannabidiol is a nonpsychoactive compound found in both cannabis and hemp plants, which are different varieties of the same plant species. Cannabis plants are often grown in order to cultivate tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the component in marijuana that is responsible for the “high” feeling in people who smoke or ingest it. Many hemp plants, on the other hand, have had the THC largely bred out of them, according to a report published in November 2016 in Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences. These plants are grown for a variety of products, including textiles, insulation, food, paper, supplements, and skin-care items.
While headlines may lead you to believe that CBD — sold in oils, edibles, tinctures, creams, capsules, and more — is a cure-all, there are really just a handful of conditions that scientific studies suggest it can treat, according to a report published in 2018 by the World Health Organization. It's important to know that CBD is treated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the same way as dietary supplements — that is, like supplements, CBD products can go to market without scientific evidence that they actually work. It's a “buyer beware” situation.
The next challenge is finding products that are accurately labeled. According to research published in November 2017 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, many CBD products do not contain the amount of CBD their labels claim. The research, conducted at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, involved testing 84 CBD products to see if they contained the amount of CBD listed. The researchers found 70 percent of CBD products are mislabeled, and “26 percent contained less CBD than labeled, which could negate any potential clinical response.”
What Conditions Is CBD Used For?
It seems like everywhere you look, cannabidiol, better known as CBD, is being touted as a cure for, well, anything that might ail you. At last check, you can find CBD in hundreds of products meant to relieve all manner of pain and anxiety, and in lifestyle-enhancing products like sports-recovery balms, personal lubricants, sleeping aids, and energy boosters that might keep you up all night (yep, take your pick!).
Here’s a look at what a handful of scientific studies have found in recent years concerning CBD's medical usefulness, including some diseases and ailments for which the FDA has approved CBD products.
If you’re suffering from any of the ailments or diseases on this list and are curious to see if CBD could help, you should also know about the side effects that some people experience when using CBD products. The most common are dizziness, dry mouth, mood changes, gastrointestinal issues — including nausea — and fatigue. And since research has shown that CBD can interact with a variety of medications, including warfarin (a blood thinner) and clobazam (used to treat epilepsy), it’s essential to discuss your use of CBD-containing products with your physician or other healthcare provider.
Like any other product, from aspirin to zinc oxide, CBD is not for everyone. And even though it’s “natural,” it’s not necessarily safe, especially for people who are taking other medications. If you decide to try CBD products, make sure you know where the products are sourced from, how they’re manufactured, and how they’re meant to be used.