According to the National Ataxia Foundation: it . . . "means clumsiness of movement or loss of coordination that is not a result of muscle weakness"

And the National Institute of Neurological Disorders: it "often occurs when parts of the nervous system that control movement are damaged. People . . . can experience a failure of muscle control in their arms and legs resulting in lack of balance and coordination or a disturbance of gait"

Webster's Dictionary: "lack of order; confusion; and inability to coordinate voluntary muscle movements symptomatic of some nervous disorders"

Wikipedia: "lack of order; it is a neurological sign and symptom consisting of gross incoordination of muscle movements; a specific clinical manifestation implying dysfunction of part of the nervous system that coordinates movement, such as cerebellum"

It is broken into two distinct groups: hereditary, of which there are twenty-five currently idendified; and sporadic, which are not caused by gene defect but possibly any number of other causes.

Although more and more is discovered each year about ataxia, it is considered a rare disorder.

Causes.... Symptoms.... Diagnosis.... Treatment.... Recovery.... Stroke

From Ataxia to Health