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Medical history questions may include:
- 1. When did this behavior start?
- 2. Is there a pattern to the postures?
- 3. Is it always the same type of posture?
- 4. Is there any history of a head injury or drug use?
- 5. What other symptoms occurred before or with the abnormal posturing?
Abnormal posturing in which a person is stiff with bent arms, clenched fists, and legs held out straight. The arms are bent in toward the body and the wrists and fingers are bent and held on the chest. This type of posturing is a sign of severe damage in the brain. Less serious than decerebrate posture.
Abnormal body posture that involves the arms and legs being held straight out, the toes being pointed downward, and the head and neck being arched backwards. The muscles are tightened and held rigidly. This type of posturing usually means there has been severe damage to the brain. More serious than decorticate posture.
Condition in which the body is held in an abnormal position. The person is usually rigid and arches the back, with the head thrown backward. If a person with opisthotonos lies on his or her back, only the back of the head and the heels touch the supporting surface.
Abnormal Posturing Causes
- 1. Cerebral edema
- 2. Head injury
- 3. Increased intracranial pressure due to any cause
- 4. Reye syndrome
- 5. Stroke
- 6. Uncal herniation
- 7. Bleeding in the brain from any cause (intracranial hemorrhage)
- 8. Brain stem tumor
- 9. Cerebral infarction (stroke)
- 10. Encephalopathy (brain problem due to drugs, poisoning, or infection)
- 11. Hepatic encephalopathy (brain problem due to liver failure)
- 12. Primary brain tumor
- 13. Secondary brain tumor
- Sign of serious central nervous system damage. Problems with or damage to the nervous system may appear as posturing when a person does certain tasks, such as walking on the sides of the feet, toes, or heels. An affected person may alternate between different postures as the condition changes.Injury
- or swelling of a part of the brain, spinal cord, or nervous system is the most common cause of abnormal posturing. The type of posturing depends on the type and area of the nervous system involved.