Juvenile spinal muscular atrophy or type 3 muscular atrophy is a milder form of spinal muscular atrophy that typically manifests between 18 months of age and early adolescence.
Children with juvenile spinal muscular atrophy:
Signs and symptoms of juvenile spinal muscular atrophy include muscle weakness where the legs are much weaker than the arms; scoliosis or curvature of the spine in almost half of patients; sore muscles and symptoms of joint overuse; tremors or fine shaking of the fingers and hands; and swallowing, coughing, and breathing problems at night with increased vulnerability to respiratory tract infections and complications.
Juvenile spinal muscular atrophy is diagnosed before three years with a blood test that identifies gene mutations. If there is a mutation, your doctor my perform a physical examination and order other laboratory tests such as electromyography (measures the electrical activity of muscles), nerve conduction velocity test (assesses how well the nerves are functioning in response to an electrical stimulus) and muscle biopsy, to rule out other neuromuscular conditions.
There is no treatment for juvenile spinal muscular atrophy. However there is a lot that you can do to manage symptoms and improve your child’s quality of life. Symptoms can be managed through respiratory medicine, physiotherapy and occupational therapy. Physical aids such as walkers, bracing, orthotics and wheel chairs may be needed to provide support while walking. In addition, physical activity, such as swimming and hydrotherapy may be recommended.
Bryant could hear the whistles blowing as he walked by the gymnasium.View more
As a new season of school sports and youth leagues gets underway,View more
Becoming involved in a sport is one of the healthiest things that a child can do.View more
More programs are using procedures and surgical techniques tailored for kids.View more