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Link: Brainstem Reticular Myoclonus

Myoclonus is defined as ‘quick movement of muscle.’ The resulting brief jerks are shock-like involuntary movements due to either a muscle contraction (positive myoclonus) or a brief interruption of contraction of active muscles (negative myoclonus). The term myoclonus initially included a variety of involuntary movements including tics. In 1903, Lundborg proposed the first classification to help specify this entity. Today, myoclonus can be classified based on clinical features, pathophysiology, or cause. On the basis of the clinical characteristics and electrodiagnostic studies, a relatively accurate site of origin in the nervous system can be predicted. Myoclonus can arise from the cortex, brainstem, spinal cord, and rarely from peripheral nerves. Those arising from the brainstem include exaggerated startle, reticular reflex myoclonus, and palatal myoclonus/tremor.


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