Prevalence rate and functional status of cerebellar ataxia in Korea

Byung Euk Joo, Chan Nyoung Lee, Kun Woo Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Cerebellar ataxia (hereinafter referred to as CA) designate a group of neurodegenerative disorders. CA is distinguished into a group of hereditary and nonhereditary disorders. CA shows clinically progressive features and accompanies various neurological abnormalities. However, there are very few studies and case reports in Korean patients. To estimate the prevalence rate and current status of the CA patients in Korea, we used data from the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service (HIRAS) and from the National Health Insurance Corporation. To evaluate the functional status of CA patient in Korea, we conducted a simple random sampling among the 500 members of Korea Ataxia Society registered on its homepage. We evaluated the functional status and degree of disturbance to their everyday life with modified Rankin scales and Barthel ADL index. Using the data from HIRAS, we could estimate the prevalence rate of CA patients in Korea as 8.29 patients/100,000 persons. The prevalence rate of hereditary and non-hereditary cerebellar ataxia was 4.99 patients/100,000 persons and 3.30 patients/ 100,000 persons, respectively. Data on rare intractable diseases reported by the Korean Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2006 suggested that the number of CA patients who have visited medical institutes was almost doubled for the 2-year period. The medical expense and hospital stay also increased 4.5- and 3-fold, respectively. After severity evaluation with modified Rankin scales and Barthel ADL index, we found that most CA patients in Korea have ataxiarelated difficulties in their everyday life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)733-738
Number of pages6
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Sept
Externally publishedYes


  • Cerebellar ataxia
  • Functional status
  • Prevalence rate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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