Clinical short communication| Volume 446, 120577, March 15, 2023

Secondary dystonia following parenchymal brain tumors

  • José Fidel Baizabal-Carvallo
    Corresponding author at: Ave León 428, Jardines del Moral, León, Guanajuato 37320, Mexico.
    Parkinson's Disease Center and Movement Disorders Clinic, Department of Neurology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA

    Department of Sciences and Engineering, University of Guanajuato, León, Mexico
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  • Joseph Jankovic
    Parkinson's Disease Center and Movement Disorders Clinic, Department of Neurology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA
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Published:January 31, 2023DOI:


      • Secondary dystonia may follow in patients with parenchymal brain tumors.
      • Hemidystonia is the most common presentation in patients with brain tumors.
      • Dystonia developed in patients with slow growth tumors (WHO I or II).
      • Basal ganglia, thalamus and cortex were the most common sites of brain tumors with dystonia.
      • Dystonia may improve, persist, re-emerge or develop following treatment of brain tumors.



      Secondary dystonia has been associated with diverse etiologies. Dystonia associated with brain tumors has not been well characterized.


      To characterize dystonia and relationship with parenchymal brain tumors.


      We present six patients (1.03%) with dystonia related to parenchymal brain tumors, among 580 screened cases.


      Contralateral hemidystonia was observed in four cases, followed by focal limb (n = 1) and cervical dystonia (n = 1). Dystonia presented during the phase of tumor growth in four cases, and following tumor treatment in two, one case had re-emergent dystonia. Tumors were low-grade (WHO I or II) and located in the basal ganglia (n = 3), cortical areas (n = 2), thalamus (n = 1) and cerebral peduncle (n = 1).


      Secondary dystonia may be caused by brain tumors in diverse locations including basal ganglia, cortex and thalamus. It may be the presenting symptom of brain tumor or follow surgical resection combined with ancillary therapy.


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