Strange Hand Syndrome – What is it, Causes and Treatments

Strange Hand Syndrome  is a rare neurological disorder in which a hand functions involuntarily, with the victim completely unaware of its action. While the above example may be extreme, people suffering from Strange Hand Syndrome have experienced similar symptoms in certain cases. Less creepy symptoms include involuntary reaching and squeezing, contact with the face, or tearing of clothing. More extreme cases involved the involuntary stuffing of food into the mouth, preventing the handnormal ability to complete simple tasks and self-inflicted punches or strangulations. Although it is seen as more of a nuisance than a medical threat, its sufferers often experience psychological problems and embarrassment and are occasionally harmed as a result of the renegade members’ actions.

Strange Hand Syndrome differs from other involuntary limb movement conditions in that the actions of the affected limb are purposeful and goal-oriented. The affected hand will pick up an object and try to use it, or perform a simple task such as buttoning and unbuttoning a shirt. Patients retain all feeling of sensation in Strange Hand Syndrome , but they often describe feelings of disassociation. Patients may also display strange behaviors, such as talking to the hand , claiming demonic possession, or referring to him in the third person.

Also known as alien hand , Strange Hand Syndrome was first identified in 1909 and there have only been 40 to 50 recorded cases since then. It is believed that other instances may have been diagnosed as part of an existing mental health disorder. The rarity and non-threatening nature of Strange Hand Syndrome has  led to infrequent research and a lack of hard data, resulting in a condition that is largely mysterious. Very recently, however, new clues have been discovered that help identify the part of the brain that is active during episodes of Strange Hand Syndrome .

Causes of Strange Hand Syndrome: Different types of brain injuries cause different subtypes of Strange Hand Syndrome . For example, take an injury to the corpus callosum (the area of ​​the brain that connects the two cerebral hemispheres, the two halves of the brain). Such an injury to a right hand can give rise to intentional movements of the left hand , while injury to the frontal lobe of the brain can trigger grasping and other intentional movements indominant right hand . More complex hand movementsstrokes , aneurysms or strokes .

Although modern medicine has made enormous advances in many areas, even mapping the human genome, there remain aspects of human health that continue to elude our full understanding. Strange Hand Syndrome is one such puzzle, with its sufferers with one hand , usually non-dominant, acting as if it has a mind of its own.

Incredibly and often embarrassingly, shockingly and pulling, Strange Hand Syndrome can compulsively grasp a chest or fondle a penis while the person is stuck riding the subway or waiting in line; There are also possible legal ramifications if the hand moves away to other people so inappropriately.

Described by scientists as a “complex goal-directed activity of a hand that is not voluntarily initiated,” sufferers of the disorder are aware of movement and feel what the hand feels , but often feel as if they have no control over it. It almost always occurs on the non-dominant side (i.e. if you are right-handed, your odd hand would be your left), many patients with this condition get to the point where they refer to the hand  as if it were someone else, even giving it a name. different. Often sufferers may complain, “I can’t make you hear me.”

Symptoms of Strange Hand Syndrome: range from compulsively grasping and releasing an object to totally self-oppositional movements such as squeezing a cigarette immediately after the other hand lights up or unbuttoning a shirt like the other hand buttons. Between the extremes, some sufferers can control the arm with great effort, although even then, their movements can be imprecise; For example, when trying to touch the tip of their nose, they touch their shoulder instead. Extreme cases have occurred where the hand has attacked, and even tried to strangle with a cable, the person it is attached to.

The syndrome itself is one of several similar conditions, each thought to be the product of some type of brain trauma or injury. The most common, or at least the best documented, cases of Strange Hand Syndrome involve epileptics who have voluntarily undergone a procedure to separate the left and right hemispheres of the brain in an effort to control their seizures; However, it is known to occur in people who have suffered from a brain tumor , stroke, infection, or aneurysm.

Strange Hand Syndrome Treatments: There is no known cure for Strange Hand Syndrome , although it can usually be controlled a bit by giving the   Strange Hand  something to do, such as having a cane while in public, so that the hand remains busy.

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