Muscular Dystrophy

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Muscular dystrophy is a group of muscle diseases that weaken the musculoskeletal system and hamper locomotion. Muscular dystrophies are characterized by progressive skeletal muscle weakness, defects in muscle proteins, and the death of muscle cells and tissue.
In the 1860s, descriptions of boys who grew progressively weaker, lost the ability to walk, and died at an early age became more prominent in medical journals. In the following decade, French neurologist Guillaume Duchenne gave a comprehensive account of thirteen boys with the most common and severe form of the disease, which now carries his name—Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
It soon became evident that the disease had more than one form. The other major forms are Becker, limb-girdle, …show more content…

A physical examination and the patient 's medical history will help the doctor determine the type of muscular dystrophy. Specific muscle groups are affected by different types of muscular dystrophy.
Often, there is a loss of muscle mass, which may be hard to see because some types of muscular dystrophy cause a buildup of fat and connective tissue that makes the muscle appear larger. This is called pseudohypertrophy.
There is no known cure for muscular dystrophy, although significant headway is being made with antisense oligonucleotides. Physical therapy, occupational therapy, orthotic intervention, speech therapy and orthopedic instruments may be helpful. Inactivity and bodybuilding efforts to increase myofibrillar hypertrophy can worsen the …show more content…

After diagnosis, medical care may include services in neurology, nutrition, gastroenterology, respiratory care, cardiac care, orthopedics, psychosocial, rehabilitation, and oral care.
Prognosis depends on the individual form of muscular dystrophy. In some cases a person with a muscle disease will get progressively weaker to the extent that it shortens life span due to heart and breathing complications. However, some of the muscle diseases do not affect life expectancy at all. There is a tremendous amount of ongoing research to find cures and treatments to slow muscle weakness. There is also a lot of research to learn how best to manage the breathing and heart issues which generally impact lifespan more than the muscle weakness.
Research funding
Within the United States, the three primary federally funded organizations that focus on muscular dystrophy research, including gene therapy, regenerative medicine) etc., include the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, and National Institute of Child Health and Human

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