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Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

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by Kellicker PG

(DMD; Pseudohypertrophic Muscular Dystrophy)

 

Treatment

Talk with your doctor about the best plan for your child. The disease worsens over time. Your child may need different treatments as the disease progresses. Options include the following:

Physical Therapy

Therapy plays a large role in treating DMD. Your child will work with a therapist to try to keep muscles strong.
The disease causes contractures. This is when a muscle shortens, making it difficult to move. The therapist will focus on preventing this with range of motion exercises.
Scoliosis is common in DMD. Exercises can help to keep the back as straight as possible.
Therapy plays a large role in treating DMD. Your child will work with a therapist to try to keep muscles strong.
The disease causes contractures. This is when a muscle shortens, making it difficult to move. The therapist will focus on preventing this with range of motion exercises.
Scoliosis is common in DMD. Exercises can help to keep the back as straight as possible.

Assistive Devices

Braces are used to keep the legs straight and prevent contractures. A walker and wheelchair may be needed later when the leg muscles become too weak to walk.
Braces are used to keep the legs straight and prevent contractures. A walker and wheelchair may be needed later when the leg muscles become too weak to walk.

Respiratory Therapy

As the disease progresses, the muscles that support breathing may weaken. Your child may need a ventilator. It will deliver air through a mask, tube, or sometimes through a surgical hole in the windpipe called a tracheotomy .

Surgery

Surgery is sometimes used to treat symptoms of DMD. For severe contractures, surgery may be done to release specific tendons. Scoliosis can sometimes interfere with your child’s breathing. In this case, back surgery may be done.
 

RESOURCES

Muscular Dystrophy Association
http://www.mda.org

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
http://www.ninds.nih.gov

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Institutes of Health Research
http://www.cihr-irsc.gc.ca

Muscle Dystrophy Canada
http://www.muscle.ca

 

References


Duchenne muscular dystrophy. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated March 15, 2013. Accessed August 6, 2013.


Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Muscular Dystrophy website. Available at: http://mda.org/disease/duchenne-muscular-dystrophy. Accessed August 6, 2013.

 

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