Muscular Dystrophy Essay

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“Dystrophy,” originally coming from the Greek “dys,” which means “difficult” or “faulty, and “trophe,” meaning “nourishment” holds the interpretation “poor nutrition.” Today we know poor nutrition is not the cause of Muscular Dystrophy (“Myotonic Dystrophy”). Muscular Dystrophy is a genetic disorder that affects between 500-600 newborns each year in the US (Statistics on Muscular Dystrophy). In general, this disorder weakens your skeletal muscles, and eventually they degenerate. Muscular Dystrophy also has several specific types within the disorder, such as: Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, Becker Muscular Dystrophy, and Myotonic Dystrophy. Each one has their own specific characteristics. Muscular Dystrophy is a genetic disorder in which …show more content…
Myotonic Dystrophy, or Myotonia, is the delayed relaxation of a muscle after it has been contracted. For example a person may not be able to release their grip on a doorknob or handle. Myotonia, unlike Duchenne and Becker’s Muscular Dystrophy, affects the upper body. More specifically, the hands, face, neck, and forearms. Myotonia also affects feet as well. Myotonia doesn’t actually show up until approximately nineteen years of age, and luckily it does not shorten a person’s lifespan (“Myotonic Dystrophy”). Myotonic Dystrophy doesn’t have a very lengthy history, but a lot was discovered over the years. In 1876, Thomsen described Myotonia having patterns similar to Myotonia Congenita. Also in 1886, Eulenburg came to the conclusion it was also like Paramyotonia Congenita. Myotonia was also described Steinert in 1909, and he called it Myotonia Atrophica. One of the most breakthrough discoveries dealing with Myotonic Dystrophy occurred in 1941, when Denny-Brown and Nevin concluded that this disorder affects muscles not nerves. The genetic basis of the disease was discovered in 1992 (Myotonic Dystrophy. Yale Univ.) Myotonia produces a very wide variety of symptoms. Symptoms include: baldness at the front and back of the head, malfunction of the ovaries and testes, facial weakness, drooping eyelids, impaired swallowing and eye movement, cataracts in the eyes may develop, loss of coordination, and heart rates can be abnormally slowed. Also muscles of the stomach could

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