Children with Duchenne suffer with progressive muscle deterioration and an ongoing decline in physical function.5
Muscle weakness becomes apparent in early childhood, and, on average, patients require a wheelchair by the early teenage years.3,5,6
Ultimately, progressive muscle degeneration causes respiratory and cardiac failure, leading to early death.1
Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a severe progressive disease presenting in early childhood that needs an accurate and early diagnosis.1 Learn how to recognise the early signs and symptoms, click here.
Disorders of the muscle (e.g. Duchenne muscular dystrophy)
Disorders of the neuromuscular junction (e.g. congenital myasthenic syndrome)
Disorders of the motor neuron (e.g. spinal muscular atrophy)
Disorders of the peripheral nerve (e.g. Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease)
The majority of neuromuscular disorders that present in childhood have a genetic basis.1 The most commonly encountered genetic paediatric neuromuscular condition is Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which affects 1 out of every 3,600–6000 newborn males worldwide.1-4
Children with neuromuscular disease experience progressive muscle deterioration and an ongoing decline in physical function.5 The earliest and most common sign of neuromuscular disease is muscle weakness, which manifests as delayed motor development.4,6 Delays in language, speech and cognition should also prompt suspicion that something may be wrong.4,7–9 To learn more about red flag signs and symptoms click here.
Monitoring motor development can help to identify developmental delay earlier, allowing for timely referral to aid the diagnostic process.7
Even though neuromuscular diseases are not curable, management and treatment options are available. 10,11
An early diagnosis can facilitate access to the right treatment and services, which may help improve outcomes and help to avoid life-threatening complications. 4,6,10
An early diagnosis can help improve outcomes and avoid life-threatening complications4,6,10 If you suspect a neuromuscular disorder, order a creatine kinase (CK) blood test, click here to learn more.
(excluding UK and Ireland)
Not a healthcare professional but want to know more? Visit Duchenne and You for more information on signs and symptoms of Duchenne, diagnosis and support following a Duchenne diagnosis
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