Task-specific dystonia, also known as “writers cramp” can occur in people who do repetitive movements.
It gets its name task-specific because classically, it only occurs during one specific task. It can be inherited, secondary to an underlying neurologic cause, or occur sporadically.
It is often initiated by voluntary movement with symptoms “overflowing” into adjacent muscles causing involuntary muscle cramping of adjacent fingers, wrist, and can include forearm. It can sometimes resemble a tremor. The most common task-specific dystonia is writers cramp, but this also frequently occurs in musicians due to the repetitive motions of playing an instrument. Treatments range from conservative measures such as occupational therapy and stretching to Botulinum toxin (Botox) injections of affected muscles if severely limiting function.