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Palatal myoclonus

Palatal myoclonus is a fast spasm (contraction) of the muscles in the roof of the mouth.

Causes

Palatal myoclonus is most often due to damage (lesions) on brain nerve pathways. Stroke is the most common cause. The problem most often develops about a year after the stroke occurs. Other conditions such as multiple sclerosis, trauma, or tumor may also lead to this problem.

Symptoms

Symptoms include:

  • Clicking in the ear
  • Popping in the ear
  • Fluttering sounds in the ear with normal hearing

Alternative Names

Palatal tremor

References

Jankovic J. Parkinson disease and other movement disorders. In: Daroff RB, Jankovic J, Mazziotta JC, Pomeroy SL, eds. Bradley's Neurology in Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 96.

Kim JS, Caplan LR. Verterobasilar disease. In: Grotta JC, Albers GW, Broderick JP, et al, eds. Stroke: Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, and Management. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 26.

Review Date 12/20/2016

Updated by: Sumana Jothi MD, specialist in laryngology, Assistant Clinical Professor, UCSF Otolaryngology, NCHCS VA, SFVA, San Francisco, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.