Movement disorders are relatively rare after closed head injury (CHI), but when present they can go unrecognized if clinicians are not aware of their occurrence. We are presenting a case of hemiballismus which was not recognized over 3 years and was labelled as malingering or as psychosomatic. The symptoms have responded significantly to pharmacological interventions. The SPECT scan of the brain showed the lesions in the subthalamic areas while MRI, CT scans of brain and EEGs were reported normal. It is concluded that one should be aware of the existence of movement disorders after mild to moderate CHI, and that SPECT scan of the brain should be considered if a patient is symptomatic and other neuroimaging studies prove ‘normal’.
Brain Injury. 1996 Feb;10(2):155-8.