Huntington's Disease (HD)
Juvenile Huntington's Disease (JHD)
Huntington's disease is a hereditary, degenerative, and terminal brain disease.
Huntington's disease is caused by a genetic defect on chromosome 4. Huntington's
disease (HD) or Juvenile Huntington's disease (JHD), is an autosomal dominant
disease. This means that only one parent must have the mutated gene for a child to
inherit the disease. Huntington’s disease slowly diminishes the affected individual's
ability to walk, talk, and reason. It has been noted that symptoms of Huntington's
disease can begin to show at ages 40-50, however we know that symptoms can
show much earlier in life. In time, the person with HD relies completely upon others
for their personal care. HD affects the lives of families - emotionally, psychologically,
socially, and economically. HD affects males, females, and knows no ethnic and
racial boundaries. Every child of a person with Huntington's disease has a 50/50
chance of inheriting the fatal gene. Often, the individual with HD might seem to be
(or act) "drunk" to the on-looker, due to the physical attributes of the disease.
Juvenile HD affects younger individuals. When the onset of the disease happens
before the age of twenty, the disease is called Juvenile Huntington's disease.
Individuals who suffer with JHD experience the same challenges as individuals with
HD, however the onset of physical and emotional symptoms happens earlier in life.
These younger individuals experience many additional traumatic symptoms of
Huntington’s disease: epileptic seizures, adverse behaviors, and mental
dysfunctions, decline in scholastics...the list goes on. These JHD Warriors need
much more support and resources. Currently, not many of these vital resources are
available, which makes the battle much more difficult!
*Current statistics specify that one out of every 10,000 American has HD.
Unfortunately, these statistics are outdated. We know that so many more individuals
in America (and globally) have JHD/HD, or are at risk.*