Unfortunately, no definitive treatments for LGMD exist. Management depends on each individual and the specific type of LGMD that the individual has. However, the American Academy of Neurology has developed guidelines for treatment of LGMD including:
Weight control to avoid obesity
Physical therapy and stretching exercises to promote mobility and prevent contractures (fixed tightening of the muscles)
Use of mechanical aids such as canes, walkers, orthotics, and wheelchairs as needed to help ambulation and mobility
Monitoring and surgical intervention as needed for orthopedic complications, such as foot deformity and scoliosis
Monitoring respiratory function and use of respiratory aids when needed
Monitoring for evidence of cardiomyopathy in the types of LGMD with known occurrence of cardiac involvement
Monitoring of weight given the potential for swallowing issues (dysphagia) and use of nutritional supplementation as needed
Social and emotional support and stimulation to maximize a sense of social involvement and productivity, and to reduce the sense of social isolation common in these disorders
A team approach to treatment is recommended including a neurologist, pulmonologist, cardiologist, orthopedic surgeon, physiatrist, physical/occupational/speech therapist, nutritionist, orthopedist, mental health counselors, and geneticist/genetic counselor.
While not a currently available treatment option, some studies have shown promising results with the use of gene therapy. More research is needed to prove the safety and efficacy of this treatment approach.
Last updated: 11/18/2016
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