What are signs of upper extremity involvement in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD)?

Updated: Aug 17, 2020
  • Author: Twee T Do, MD; Chief Editor: Jeffrey D Thomson, MD  more...
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Answer

While still ambulatory, the child may have minimal deformities, including iliopsoas or tendo Achillis tightness. Mild scoliosis may be present if the child has an asymmetrical stance. Upper-extremity involvement rarely occurs in the beginning, although proximal arm muscle weakness may be evident on manual strength testing. When upper-extremity involvement manifests in later stages of Duchenne MD, it is symmetrical and, along with distal weakness, usually follows a rapid worsening of the child's condition toward being wheelchair bound.


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