Muscular Dystrohy and its Ayurvedic Management

  • There are nine main categories of muscular dystrophy that contain more than thirty specific types.

  • The most common type is Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) which typically affects males beginning around the age of four.

  • They are due to mutations in genes that are Muscular dystrophy (MD) is a group of muscle diseases that results in increasing weakening and breakdown of skeletal muscles over time. The disorders differ in which muscles are primarily affected, the degree of weakness, how fast they worsen, and when symptoms begin Many people will eventually become unable to walk.

  • Other types include Becker muscular dystrophy, facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy, and myotonic dystrophy.

  • Muscle proteins. This can occur due to either inheriting the defect from one's parents or the mutation occurring during early development. Disorders may be X-linked recessive, autosomal recessive, or autosomal dominant. Diagnosis often involves blood tests and genetic testing.

  • There is no cure for muscular dystrophy. Physical therapy braces, and corrective surgery may help with some symptoms. Assisted ventilation may be required in those with weakness of breathing muscles. Medications used include steroids to slow muscle degeneration, anticonvulsants to control seizures and some muscle activity, and immunosuppressants to delay damage to dying muscle cells. Outcomes depend on the specific type of disorder.

  • Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which represents about half of all cases of muscular dystrophy, affects about one in 5,000 males at birth. Muscular dystrophy was first described in the 1830s by Charles Bell. The word "dystrophy" is from the Greek dys, meaning "difficult" and troph meaning "nourish". Gene therapy, as a treatment, is in the early stages of study in humans.

 Signs and symptoms

The signs and symptoms consistent with muscular dystrophy are:

  • Progressive muscular wasting
  • Poor balance
  • Scoliosis (curvature of the spine and the back)
  • Progressive inability to walk
  • Waddling gait
  • Calf deformation
  • Limited range of movement
  • Respiratory difficulty
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Muscle spasms
  • Gowers' sign


These conditions are generally inherited, and the different muscular dystrophies follow various inheritance patterns. Muscular dystrophy can be inherited by individuals as an X-linked disorder, a recessive or dominant disorder. Furthermore, it can be a spontaneous mutation which means errors in the replication of DNA and spontaneous lesions. Spontaneous lesions are due to natural damage to DNA, where the most common are depurination and deamination.

Dystrophin protein is found in muscle fibre membrane; its helical nature allows it to act like a spring or shock absorber. Dystrophin links actinin the cytoskeleton and dystroglycans of the muscle cell plasma membrane, known as the sarcolemma (extracellular). In addition to mechanical stabilization, dystrophin also regulates calcium levels.

Duchenne muscular dystrophy

DMD  Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is the most common childhood form of muscular dystrophy; it generally affects only boys (with extremely rare exceptions), becoming clinically evident when a child begins walking. By age 10, the child may need braces for walking and by age 12, most patients are unable to walk. Lifespans range from 15 to 45, though a few exceptions occur. Researchers have identified the gene for the protein dystrophin, which when absent, causes DMD. Since the gene is on the X chromosome, this disorder affects primarily males, and females who are carriers have milder symptoms. Sporadic mutations in this gene occur frequently.

Dystrophin is part of a complex structure involving several other protein components. The "dystrophin-glycoprotein complex" helps anchor the structural skeleton (cytoskeleton) within the muscle cells, through the outer membrane (sarcolemma) of each cell, to the tissue framework (extracellular matrix) that surrounds each cell. Due to defects in this assembly, contraction of the muscle leads to disruption of the outer membrane of the muscle cells and eventual weakening and wasting of the muscle.

Ayurvedic Line of Treatment

1 - Shnehana
2 - Shwedna
3 - Basti
4 - Rashayana
5 - Kashya Therapy
6 - Bringhan Chikitsha

Some Ayurvedic Preparations useful In Mamsa Chaya

1 - Swarn Malni Basant Rasha
2 - Mahamasha Tailam
3 - Baat Kulantak Rasha
4 - Brihat Vata Chinamani Rsaha
5 - Chyawan Prash Awleha


More by :  Dr. Shiv Dwivedi

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