Cardiac findings in congenital muscular dystrophies

Pediatrics. 2010 Sep;126(3):538-45. doi: 10.1542/peds.2010-0208. Epub 2010 Aug 2.


Cardiac involvement (CI) in congenital muscular dystrophies (CMDs) has been only rarely investigated so far. By means of a systematic literature search we reviewed the literature about CI in CMD and found that CI is apparently absent in Ullrich CMD or CMD with integrin deficiency and only mild in Bethlem CMD. CI in merosin deficiency includes dilated cardiomyopathy and systolic dysfunction. CI in dystroglycanopathies seems most prevalent among all CMDs and includes dilated cardiomyopathy, systolic dysfunction, and myocardial fibrosis in Fukuyama CMD. Among the nonspecified dystroglycanopathies, CI manifests as dilated cardiomyopathy, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (CMP) or systolic dysfunction. With CMD type 1C, as well as with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy 2I, up to half of the patients develop dilated cardiomyopathy. In rigid-spine syndrome, predominantly the right heart is affected secondary to thoracic deformity. In patients who carry LMNA mutations, CI may manifest as dilated cardiomyopathy, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or fatal ventricular arrhythmias. Overall, CI in patients with CMD varies considerably between the different CMD types from absent or mild CI to severe cardiac disease, particularly in merosin deficiency, dystroglycanopathies, and laminopathies. Patients with CMD with CI require regular cardiologic surveillance so that severe, treatable cardiac disease is not overlooked.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cardiomyopathies / etiology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Muscular Dystrophies / classification
  • Muscular Dystrophies / complications*
  • Muscular Dystrophies / congenital*