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History of Neurology: Seminal Citations
May 2002

Chorea Gravidarum

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Neurology and Psychiatry, The Federal University of Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Brazil.



Arch Neurol. 2002;59(5):868-870. doi:10.1001/archneur.59.5.868

According to Willson and Preece,1 the first description of chorea with onset during pregnancy (chorea gravidarum) was made by Horstius in 1661. The English translation of the Latin work provided in their article, however, indicates that the woman described by Horstius in fact developed chorea at the puerperium. This finding, as well as the persistence of the movement disorder, uncommon in chorea gravidarum,2 suggests that the chorea of the patient was related to some other cause, perhaps a stroke. In the 19th century, several authors3-6 published important studies on chorea gravidarum that, along with the 1932 article by Willson and Preece,1 helped to forge the contemporary way of viewing this peculiar form of chorea.

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