Skip to main content

Condition

Pediatric Muscular Dystrophy

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.
  • Obesity

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.

Appointments

Our team is standing by to schedule your child’s appointment.

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.

two young girls smiling

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.

two young girls smiling
Girl Smiling and Clapping

Help Kids and Make a Difference

Invest in future cures for some of life's most devastating diseases. Give today to help more children grow up stronger.

Girl Smiling and Clapping

PATIENT STORY

Alicia's Story

Alicia playing baseball

Providers Who Treat Muscular Dystrophy

    Departments that Treat Muscular Dystrophy

    Picture of baby getting examined

    Cardiogenetics Program

    We help families with known or suspected inherited heart diseases receive early detection and treatment. Learn more about our Cardiogenetics Program.

    Young Girl Smiling with Arms Up

    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.

    Provider examining young patient

    Bone Health Program

    Orthopaedists at Children's National offer world-renowned expertise and life-changing care, including surgery, for children at high risk for bone fracture.