Muscular dystrophy is a term that is used to designate a group of hereditary, genetic muscle diseases. These diseases lead to progressive muscle weakness in the muscles that enable you to move.
Muscular dystrophy means that you have missing or incorrect information in your genes. There are certain proteins that you need in order to have healthy muscles. Muscular dystrophy keeps these proteins from being produced. Muscular dystrophy is something that you inherit from your parents. It is not contagious. You cannot “catch it” from someone who has it.
Muscular dystrophy causes your muscles to get weak over time. People who are afflicted with muscular dystrophy may gradually lose the ability to do things that most of us take for granted like walking or sitting up. These problems that are caused by muscular dystrophy can begin at birth or shortly after. However, they can also take place later on in childhood, adolescence or adulthood.
There are several different forms of muscular dystrophy that affect different muscle groups in different ways. Barbeau’s disease is one of the kinds of muscular dystrophy.
Barbeau’s disease is usually an adult form of the disease. The onset of Barbeau’s disease is usually when you are in your 40s or 50s. It can even occur up to around the age of 70.
Little was known about what causes any kind of muscular dystrophy until the 1980s. Then, researchers found out that it is caused by a mutated (defective) gene. There is an insufficient amount of dystrophin because of the defective gene. Dystrophin is a protein that aids in keeping your muscle cells intact. In the case of Barbeau’s disease, there is a faulty gene that is believed to make extra chemical material that causes the development of clumps in your muscle cells.
Barbeau’s disease progresses slowly. The first sign or symptom of Barbeau’s disease is usually muscle weakness of your throat and eyelids. You may have difficulty swallowing. Your may have trouble keeping your eyes open or with drooping eyelids.
As Barbeau’s disease advances, you may have other signs and symptoms. Some of these include:
- Characteristic face
- Progressive muscle weakness in your limbs
- Progressive weakness in your facial muscles
- Progressive ptosis (drooping of your eyelids)
- Weakness and wasting (loss of muscle tissue) of your tongue.
- MD and Receiving Social Security Disability Benefits (disabilitycasereview.com)
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