Torsion Dystonia in 21st. century
I think it's so important to acknowledge (even for the most severe cases) dystonia, and everything concerning this disease, have gone through such remarkable changes in the last decades, almost from every single point of view, not only in the medical or social fields but also every patient possibilities of personal enhancement.
The main medical advance I reckon comes from the diagnostic area, very specially in those TD genetically inherited (with some research lines open in Spain).
I personally suffered my own little torment when being a young boy in the seventies. First my family and I had to face some wrong (writer sickness) or even reckless diagnosis (brain deficiency of unknown consequences). Besides I had to undergo several tests, proofs and treatments until doctors were able to give a name to that 'strange' disease I was living with. Nowadays we know symptoms of dystonia are much more approachable and the diagnosis pretty accurate. We even have at hand standard treatments (botulinic toxin, brain surgery, etc.) able to mitigate some symptoms and problems due to TD and other dystonia. Furthermore, and this is really important, doctors and society are really conscious of the psychic and emotional aspects of dystonia.
Current society, and also Spanish one, is much more sensitive with disorders causing disabilities as TD. Legal advantages and social assistance are finely regulated, dystonia is now widely known and considered, and, what’s more, some generic and specific associations such as ALDE do exist, with people working to take care of this special community.
Anyway, the main advantages the patients of TD can take in a practical way come from technology. The universal use of computers has become the most important tool to substitute more accurate manual actions such as writing, drawing and others. New technologies of information and communication developed all along digital nets (corporative intranets, internet, etc.) and also related software make both professional and personal chances so much easier for everyone, in the office and also at home, specially for those people with torsion dystonia and similar disorders. Fortunately, we can proudly say the number of devices specially designed for making easier the daily tasks of people with different kinds of disability keeps on growing every day all over the world.
All of this, and surely much more, must encourage us to believe in a better and, why not, a bit happier world to live not only for every current patient of TD but, of course, for those children who will suffer from the disease in the future.