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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Other Names for this Disease
  • DMD
  • Muscular dystrophy, Duchenne
  • Muscular dystrophy, pseudohypertrophic progressive, Duchenne type
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Your Question

I am a carrier of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. I am experiencing some symptoms which I believe go beyond the realm of aging. Upon reflection, other women in my family also experienced symptoms, including loss of feeling in the legs and heart failure. Can carrier females of Duchenne muscular dystrophy exhibit symptoms? 

Our Answer

We have identified the following information that we hope you find helpful. If you still have questions, please contact us.

Can carriers of Duchenne muscular dystrophy experience signs and symptoms of the disease?

Carriers of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) usually do not experience signs and symptoms of the disorder. Occasionally, however, females who carry a DMD gene mutation may have muscle weakness and cramping. These symptoms are typically milder than the severe muscle weakness and atrophy seen in affected males. Females who carry a DMD gene mutation also have an increased risk of developing heart abnormalities including dilated cardiomyopathy.[1]

The Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) provides additional information about manifesting carriers at the following link.
Last updated: 10/6/2010