Huntington’s Disease (HD) is a fatal genetic disorder that causes the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. HD deteriorates a person’s physical and mental abilities during their prime working years, usually appearing between the ages of 30-50 and worsening over 10-25 years.
HD symptoms have been described as simultaneously having ALS, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s disease.
The effects of Huntington's Disease extend beyond the individual who suffers from it.
Every child of a parent with HD has a 50/50 chance of carrying the faulty gene that causes HD. If the child has not inherited this expanded gene, they will not develop the disease or be able to pass it on to their children.
Today, there are approximately 30,000 symptomatic Americans and more than 200,000 at risk of inheriting the disease.
Source: HDSA fast facts