New Article on FD

Long-time collaborator Dr. Joel Gutierrez published the results of a study examining brainstem reflexes in patients with FD. The study shows how sensory pathways through the cranial nerves are impaired.

The findings provide a likely explanation for the swallowing and speech problems in FD. The inability to sense the sense the muscles for the mouth, face, tongue, and jaw leads to uncoordinated swallowing (neurogenic dysphagia) and feeding difficulties, which plague patients with FD from birth . It also explains why some patients with FD have difficultly pronouncing words when speaking (dysarthria).

The brainstem reflex measurements could potentially be used as quantitative end-points to follow the course of drug treatments aimed at enhancing neurological function in FD.

Joel Gutierrez is a Professor and Chair of the Neurology and Clinical Neurophysiology Center at Havana Medical University in Cuba. He visits the Center on an annual basis to collaborate on research activities in the field of Neurophysiology. 

This work is made possible through funds from the Dysautonomia Foundation, Inc.

 Read the paper here >>