Muscular dystrophy (MD) encompasses a group of more than 30 genetic diseases characterized by progressive weakness and degeneration of the skeletal muscles that control movement. The particular form of muscular dystrophy dictates which muscles are primarily affected, the degree of weakness, how fast they worsen, and when symptoms begin. Some forms of muscular dystrophy are seen in infancy or childhood, while others may not appear until middle age or later. The disorders differ in terms of the distribution and extent of muscle weakness (some forms of muscular dystrophy also affect cardiac muscle), age of onset, rate of progression, and pattern of inheritance.
Muscular dystrophy is diagnosed based on the results of muscle biopsy, increased creatine phosphokinase, electromyography, and genetic testing. Other tests that can be done are chest X-ray, echocardiogram, CT scan, and magnetic resonance image scan, which via a magnetic field can produce images whose detail helps diagnose muscular dystrophy.
There is currently no cure for muscular dystrophy, but much research is ongoing. Physical therapies and medications are used to address muscle and respiratory issues.
The prognosis for muscular dystrophy depends on the form one has. In some cases, a person with muscular dystrophy will get progressively weaker to the extent that it shortens lifespan due to heart and breathing complications. However, some of the forms do not affect life expectancy at all, and ongoing research is attempting to find cures and treatments to slow muscle weakness.
Many with muscular dystrophy experience the progressive loss of the ability to walk and position themselves, necessitating the use of a specialized power wheelchair. Quantum Rehab®, the global leader in individualized power chairs, puts an emphasis on mobility technologies specific toward the needs of those with muscular dystrophy.
Quantum Power Chairs incorporate power-adjustable seating for user repositioning and comfort; specialty drive controls, including those requiring minimal hand strength; and, a highly-adaptable design to meet an individual’s current and future needs.
Quantum Power Chairs feature the latest advanced technologies to increase the independence of those living with muscular dystrophy. iLevel® seat elevation technology allows a user to operate the power chair at seated or standing height. Bluetooth® is also integrated into Quantum’s Q-Logic 3 electronics, so those with muscular dystrophy can operate much of their environment with the power chair drive control, itself.
For those with muscular dystrophy, Quantum Power Chairs are designed to provide optimal medical comfort and maximum independence. Please click here for more information on Quantum Power Chair solutions for those living with muscular dystrophy.
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