Penn Ataxia Clinic


The Penn Ataxia Clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic for patients with genetic or degenerative causes of cerebellar ataxia (sometimes called spinocerebellar ataxia, or SCA) located at the Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders Center in the Penn Neurological Institute building of Pennsylvania Hospital. Our program is supported by the National Ataxia Foundation and Green Family Foundation, and we are actively involved in clinical research and clinical trials for ataxia.

Being a multidisciplinary clinic means that when patients come in for a visit, they will not only see a neurologist specializing in ataxia, but will also have the opportunity to see:

  • A genetic counselor
  • A physical and occupational therapist
  • A speech-language pathologist
  • A social worker
  • A clinical research coordinator

Physical, occupational, and speech therapy will be provided by therapists from the Dan Aaron Rehabilitation Center of Good Shepherd Penn Partners, who are housed in the same building as the neurology clinic and thus have particular expertise in ataxia and neurologic disease. The genetic counseling, social work, and research team members are specialists at the Movement Disorders Center. This expanded clinic allows patients and caregivers to benefit from coordinated and comprehensive team-based care.

New patients who attend the clinic will meet with our genetic counselor and neurologist, as spinocerebellar ataxia is diagnosed via neurologic examination and confirmed through genetic testing. 

To learn more about genetic counseling please visit the Penn Neurogenetics Therapy website

Returning patients will meet with the full multidisciplinary team. As a result of your clinic visit, you will receive an active prescription for physical, occupational, and speech therapy to use either at the Dan Aaron Rehabilitation Center or with any other therapy providers. Typically, patients attend ataxia clinic every six months or annually.