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Genetic and Metabolic :
Myotonic Dystrophy

The term muscular dystrophy is used to represent a group of muscle diseases characterized by muscle weakness and wasting of muscles. Among the several forms of muscular dystrophy, the three most important ones are Duchenne Muscular dystrophy (DMD), facioscapulohumeral dystrophy, and myotonic dystrophy.

To learn more on this medical condition, its symptoms and treatment options, sign up for Medindia’s support group to connect with others dealing with myotonic dystrophy.


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1. Is it possible for parents to detect myotonic dystrophy before having an affected child?

It is possible to identify if a pregnancy is associated with risk in a family at risk of myotonic dystrophy, by using certain tests done during pregnancy. Chorionic villus sampling (CVS), in which a small amount of placental tissue is removed, can be used to extract the DNA for genetic analysis. Cells in the amniotic fluid, derived by amniocentesis can also be tested to identify any gene defect. More sophisticated prenatal diagnostic tests are now available that assist the couple to have an unaffected child. Interested parents can seek the help of genetic counselors in the decision making process.

2. Is myotonic muscular dystrophy contagious?

No, the disease is not contagious. It can however run in families. Individuals belonging to successive generations may be affected.

3. Is arthritis similar to myotonic muscular dystrophy?

No, arthritis and muscular dystrophy are two different diseases. However, some patients with muscular dystrophy can develop arthritis.

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