Understanding And Dealing with Myopathy

Myopathy is a common term used to describe the diseases that affect your skeletal muscles. These diseases mostly affect the muscle fibers and make them weak. As a result, people living with myopathy experience difficulty in performing their routine tasks like bathing, hair combing, getting up from the chair, etc. 

What are the two different types of myopathy?

There are many different types of myopathy, and the certified neurologists of South Valley Neurology treat them all. However, there are two main types on which they focus more particularly. These are:

1. Hereditary myopathy

Hereditary myopathy are diseases that you have inherited from your parents. These diseases adversely affect your muscles and are a result of gene mutations. People suffering from hereditary myopathy experience facial and skeletal abnormalities, delays in developing motor skills, and muscle weakness. 

2. Acquired myopathy

There are several reasons for which one can acquire myopathy. Some of these reasons are – nutritional deficiency, use of certain medications, experiencing physical trauma, etc. Acquired myopathy is muscle weakness and dysfunction, which is caused by defects in myofibrils. Myofibrils are muscle cells that create muscle tissues. 

Symptoms of Myopathy

One of the most common symptoms of any type of myopathy is muscle weakness. The most affected muscles are proximal muscles (muscles of shoulders, arms, hips, and thighs). Other symptoms include:

  • Experiencing difficulty in bathing, dressing, and combing hair
  • Finding it difficult to climb stairs
  • Unable to perform tasks that need you to reach over your head
  • Muscle fatigue
  • Muscle cramps or spasms
  • Shortness of breath

Symptoms may vary depending on the type of your myopathy. 

Treatment options

Once the type of your myopathy has been determined, your neurologist will develop a personalized treatment plan. Generally, the treatment will include medicines, physical therapy, and occupational therapy. For inherited myopathies, treatment can prevent the progression of the condition. However, acquired myopathies can be controlled better, and it is possible to minimize weaknesses and symptoms completely. 

Factors considered for determining the treatment option:

  • Duration and severity of the disease
  • Reports and other clinical findings
  • Response to prior treatment
  • Potential contraindications to different agents

How can you improve your health?

No matter whether your myopathy is inherited or acquired, there are always certain measures that you can take to control the disease. Some of these steps are:

  • Eating a balanced diet including fruits and veggies
  • Staying active and working out at least thrice a week. However, avoid heavy weight lifting.
  • Maintaining weight.
  • If you are suffering from dermatomyositis, take good care of your skin. Ensure to wear sunscreen, and cover your skin as much as possible. 
  • If you find it difficult to eat solids, consider pureeing your meals.
  • Don’t skip your medications
  • Participate in recommended therapies

Lastly, keep in mind that the goal of any treatment will be to prevent the progression of your disease. However, since you and your condition both are unique, certain treatment plans might not work the way you are expecting them to. So, don’t be demotivated on any level, and keep on following the recommended treatment plans. 

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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