Muscular Dystrophy Case Study

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Muscular dystrophy (MD) is a group of inherited diseases characterized by progressive weakness and generation of the skeletal muscles that control movement. The patient has to undergo “clinical examination and laboratory procedures, including electromyography, muscle biopsy, DNA analysis and selected enzymes levels assayed from blood samples” (Campbell, Palisano 2006). The most common form of muscular dystrophy occurring in children is Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy amongst other prevalent types (Table 1). The focus will be on Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy (DMD), its physiotherapy management and the outcome measures to maintain ambulation and lower limb muscle strength during the early stages of the disease.
Table 1. Classification of Muscular Dystrophy (Campbell,
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Pharmacological interventions like glucocorticoids preserve ambulation and other complications (Bushby et al 2009 pg 7). With glucocorticoid therapy, physiotherapy interventions must be incorporated into the rehabilitation programme for a patient to perform quality functional activities. The management of muscle extensibility and joint contractures are important. It allows “optimum movement and functional positioning, maintain ambulation, prevent deformities and maintain skin integrity” (Bushby et al 2010 pg 177).
In the following sections, the focus will be on joint contractures, muscle weakness, its management and the two outcome measure to measure the functional abilities of the
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