Muscular dystrophy is a broad term that describes a genetic (inherited) disorder of the muscles. Muscular dystrophy causes the muscles in the body to become very weak. The muscles break down and are replaced with fatty deposits over time.
Other health problems commonly associated with muscular dystrophy include the following:
- Heart problems
- Scoliosis. A lateral, or sideways, curvature and rotation of the back bones (vertebrae), giving the appearance that the person is leaning to one side.
The most common forms of muscular dystrophy are Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and Becker muscular dystrophy. The two forms are very similar, but Becker muscular dystrophy is less severe than DMD. Girls are rarely affected by either of these two forms of muscular dystrophy.
Frequently Asked Questions
What causes muscular dystrophy in a child?
What are the symptoms of muscular dystrophy in a child?
How is muscular dystrophy diagnosed in a child?
How is muscular dystrophy treated in a child?
What is the long-term outlook for a child with muscular dystrophy?
Advancing Care for Children with Neuromuscular Conditions
Children’s National Hospital became the first pediatric hospital to administer a commercial dose of Elevidys, the first gene therapy for the treatment of pediatric patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy after the Food and Drug Administration approved its use.
Movement Disorders Treatment at Children's National Hospital
The Movement Disorders Program at Children’s National offers evaluation, diagnosis and treatment to more than 400 children each year with conditions that affect the speed, quality and ease of their movement. Discover more about the treatments we offer.
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Providers Who Treat Muscular Dystrophy
Departments that Treat Muscular Dystrophy
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
The Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation treats and monitors infants, children and teens at all stages of inpatient and outpatient rehabilitative care.
Pre-Operative Care Clinic
When your child is having surgery at Children�s National Hospital, the Pre-Operative Care Clinic�s (POCC) team of pediatric professionals screens patients for surgery and creates a specific care plan for each patient.
Movement Disorders Program
The Movement Disorders Program at Children's National Hospital offers evaluation, diagnosis and treatment to more than 400 children each year with conditions that affect the speed, quality and ease of their movement.