Hereditary spastic paraplegia
Other Names for this Disease
- Familial spastic paraparesis
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.
Tests & Diagnosis
HSP is diagnosed on the basis of the following:
- Characteristic clinical symptoms of slowly progressive weakness and stiffness in the legs often accompanied by urinary urgency
- Neurologic examination demonstrating damage to the nerve paths connecting the spinal cord and the brain (corticospinal tract), such as spastic weakness, exaggerated reflexes, typically associated with bilateral extensor plantar responses; often accompanied by a mild inability to sense vibration in the lower part of the legs and muscle changes of the urinary bladder
- Family history shows a pattern of inhertiance that is either autosomal dominant, autosomal recessive, or X-linked recessive inheritance
Identification of a disease-causing mutation in an HSP-causing gene (Such testing is increasingly available and can confirm the diagnosis of HSP.) 
Last updated: 10/6/2011
- Fink J. Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia Overview. GeneReviews. February 6, 2014; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK1509/. Accessed 10/23/2014.