• prevalence;
  • dystonia;
  • focal dystonia;
  • India


An epidemiological study on dystonia has not been reported from India. As part of a major study to find out the prevalence of major neurological disorders in the large urban city of Kolkata, Eastern India, we planned to determine the prevalence of primary dystonia. The study design was a cross-sectional study of a sample population obtained through stratified random selection and conducted in a two-stage procedure of screening by a nonprofessional team followed by confirmation of screened positive cases by the study neurologist. A total population of 52,377 was screened, and 29 subjects with dystonia were diagnosed. Out of them 23 subjects had primary dystonias [crude prevalence rate (CPR), 43.91/100,000; 95% confidence interval (CI), 28.41–64.81; age-standardized rates to world standard population, 49.06 (95% CI,31.74–72.41)] and all cases were focal type and predominantly of limb dystonia variety. Mean onset of dystonias were earlier in women (43.5 years) as compared to men (46.6 years). Thus our study on primary dystonia shows higher prevalence when compared with that of many studies globally, predominantly of focal type, earlier onset among women, and more cases of limb dystonias when compared with more prominent blepharospasm and cervical dystonias in western reports. © 2007 Movement Disorder Society