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Benign Essential (Familial) Tremor

The cause of benign essential tremor is uncertain, but it is sometimes inherited in an autosomal dominant manner. Tremor may begin at any age.

Although the tremor may become more conspicuous with time, it generally leads to little disability, and treatment is often unnecessary. Occasionally, it interferes with manual skills and leads to impairment of handwriting. Speech may also be affected if the laryngeal muscles are involved. In such circumstances, propranolol may be helpful but Primidone may be helpful when propranolol is ineffective, but occasional patients fail to respond to these measures but are helped by alprazolam (up to 3 mg daily) in benign essential tremor.