Ataxia is a sign of cerebellar dysfunction. It’s not a single disease, but a symptom of various conditions affecting the brain and nervous system. People with ataxia experience difficulty with coordination, including problems using their fingers or hands, arms or legs, walking, speaking, or moving their eyes.

Why Choose UT Southwestern?

We are dedicated to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of ataxia, as well as the prevention and management of complications that may arise. Our multidisciplinary approach includes genetic counseling, speech therapy, physical therapy, and other programs.

At UT Southwestern Medical Center, our physicians evaluate and treat a large number of patients with neurological diseases and syndromes associated with ataxia.

Symptoms of Ataxia

Ataxia can develop as a result of damage to cells in the cerebellum over time or come on suddenly, and may cause health problems throughout the body such as:

  • Poor coordination
  • Unsteady gait or walk, or a tendency to stumble
  • Difficulty with fine motor tasks, such as eating, writing, fastening buttons, or typing
  • Difficulty with speech or swallowing
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Changes in behavior or personality

Our Services

Since ataxia isn’t a single disease, finding the cause can be challenging. We diagnosis ataxia based on a person's medical and family history, along with a complete neurological examination to determine if there are signs of cerebellar disease.

Learn how we evaluate patients for ataxia.

We focus our treatments on managing the underlying conditions. Treatments options include medications, speech therapy, genetic counseling, and physical therapy. We’ll develop a care plan specific to your symptoms.

Learn more about treatments we offer.

Request an Appointment

To schedule an appointment with an ataxia expert at UT Southwestern’s facilities in Dallas, or to learn more about our services, request an appointment or call 214-645-8300.