We rely on our muscles all day, every day, to carry our coffee, type on our computers, and walk to the grocery store. But, though it’s rare, those muscles can sometimes rebel against us. Stiff Person Syndrome (SPS) is an autoimmune and neurological disorder with no known cause that can make the muscles in the torso and limbs alternate between rigidity and spasms.
Even though the cause of this extremely rare disease is still unknown, researchers suspect that it may be the result of an autoimmune reaction where the body attacks nerve cells in the central nervous system that control muscle movement.
“People with Stiff Person Syndrome can run the spectrum from mild to severe, and a personalized approach to treating the disease is the best way to ensure an improved outcome,” says Richard Nowak, MD, a neurologist at Yale Medicine.