Guillaume Benjamin Amand Duchenne was a French Neurologist, who was the first to describe DMD, during the 1860s.
The defect that causes Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy occurs on the X chromosome. Because females are carriers of the disorder, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy occurs more often in men than in women.
Fatigue Mental retardation (possible, but does not worsen over time) Muscle weakness Begins in the legs and pelvis, but also occurs less severely in the arms, neck, and other areas of the body Difficulty with motor skills (running, hopping, jumping) Frequent falls Rapidly worsening weakness
Progressive difficulty walking Ability to walk may be lost by age 12 By age 10, the person may need braces for walking. By age 12, most patients are confined to a wheelchair.
Duchenne muscular dystrophy is caused by the absence of a key muscle protein called dystrophin. The gene for this protein is on the X chromosome. The sons of females who are carriers of the disease (women with a defective gene but no symptoms themselves) each have a 50% chance of having the disease. The daughters each have a 50% chance of being carriers.
There is no cure for DMD. However, people with Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy can maintain a healthy body attempting to increase flexible, uprightness and mobility. Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy can cause spinatural curvatures, which are treated with spine-straightening surgery or with a brace. Medical supplements such as calcium, vitamin D and corticosteriod pills, are often given to help those who have Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy to cope with the disorder.
Those with Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy that are restricted to a wheelchair are advised to eat foods high in fiber and whole grain. Ducehnne Muscle Dystorphy might also weaken the respiratory system of those with the disorder. As a result, many often have to rely on noninvasive ventilation devices to improve breathing.
The Muscular Dystrophy Association has created marathons, advocacy groups and support groups to help aid those with Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy and their families as well. Families often deal with Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy by remaining patient and supportive. Attempts are made by families to practice normal daily activities with the individual of the family who has the disorder.
Alfredo Ferrari, a man who inspired the creation of the Enzo Ferrari automobile had DMD. Famous comedian, Jerry Lewis has made has made it a major focus of his life to publicize muscular dystrophies and to help fund research towards a cure, acting in concert with the MDA.