What is the diagnosis of Monomelic Amyotrophy?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Jan 14, 2013
Quick Bites

  • It involves progressive degeneration and loss of motor neurons.
  • It can be characterised by weakness and wasting in a single limb.
  • There is no cure for this condition.
  • Diagnosis is done with help of medical history and physical examination.

Monomelic Amyotrophy involves progressive degeneration and loss of motor neurons, nerve cells of the brain and spinal cord which control the voluntary muscles.  It can be characterised by weakness and wasting in a single limb usually in the arm and hand. Although there is no pain associated with it, but affected person may experience mild sensory loss. The condition is more common in males between the ages of 15 and 25. Both onset and progression are slow.

motor Neurons

Symptoms

  • Weakness of a single limb
  • wasting of a single limb
  • Weak hand muscles
  • Weak lower arm muscles
  • fine motor control problems
  • weak grip
  • clawed hand
  • hand tremors

 

Causes of Monomelic Amyotrophy

The exact cause is not known yet.

Monomelic Amyotrophy prognosis

Is there any treatment?

There is no cure for this condition but treatment involves muscle strengthening exercises and training in hand coordination.

Prognosis

The progression of symptoms is slow in the starting few years before it reaches plateau and remain stable for many years. The progression of weakness to the opposite limb is very rare.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is done with help of medical history and physical examination. A special recording technique called Electromyography (EMG) is used to detect the electrical activity in the muscles.  Any loss to the nerve supply or denervation in the limb can be easily detected by EMG.  Other options include MRI and CT scans to identify muscle atrophy.

 

Image Courtesy : Getty Images

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