• Hasitha Illa

Muscular Dystrophy

Updated: Jun 2

Muscular Dystrophy is the sister disease to Friedreich’s Ataxia/FA (talked about it in my previous post HERE). It has very similar symptoms to FA, making it hard to distinguish. Although similar, MD is a disease that people are more aware of, as opposed to FA. Many people would come up to me and ask, “ Do you have Muscular Dystrophy/ MD?” They may be similar in terms of symptoms but biologically, they are very distinct.


BIOLOGY

MD is a collection of diseases characterized by muscle wastage. Some examples are the Duchenne and Becker Muscular Dystrophy. This is also caused by a gene mutation (like in FA) resulting in a defective protein, Dystrophin. This protein is responsible for binding the muscles to protein, like a glue. Damage to this causes muscle wastage. Muscles are in all parts of the body and this wastage can happen anywhere!


AFFECT

  • Scoliosis- muscle damage in spine

  • Heart issues- damage to heart muscles

  • Slurred speech- weak throat muscles

  • Trouble walking- degeneration in thigh muscles

  • Trouble using arms- weak hand muscles


Eventually, the muscle mass decreases to a point where the hands and legs appear like a stick.


KEEP IN MIND THAT A DIAGNOSIS DOES NOT DEFINE A CHILD!

THANK YOU.

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For more questions, email at hasithailla@yahoo.com