What Are the Treatment Options for Someone With Muscular Dystrophy?


While there is no cure for muscular dystrophy, physical therapy, surgery, exercise, rehabilitative devices and medication can relieve its symptoms, according to WebMD. Medication and physical therapy are also used to slow the progression of muscular dystrophy.

Physical therapy and exercise are treatment options used to relieve the painful and abnormal positioning of the joints that results from muscular dystrophy, according to WebMD. These methods have also been used to delay and prevent curving of the spine. Additional treatment methods include coughing exercises, deep breathing and respiratory care.

Rehabilitative devices such as canes and powered wheelchairs can also help individuals diagnosed with muscular dystrophy remain mobile and independent, according to WebMD. Muscle shortening can be treated with surgery. There are also some cases in which an individual needs to have a pacemaker implanted during surgery.

Medications prescribed to help slow muscular dystrophy include phenytoin, procainamide, corticosteriods and quinine, notes WebMD. The medication prescribed depends on whether the individual suffers from myotonic muscular dystrophy or Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Musclar dystrophy medications treat either the destruction of the muscles or delayed muscle relaxation.

It's best that individuals who have a family history of muscular dystrophy meet with a genetic counselor before considering having children, according to WebMD. While carriers often don't have the disease, they can display some symptoms.