Cardiac transplantation in female Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy

J Neurol. 1990 Aug;237(5):316-9. doi: 10.1007/BF00314751.


A young woman with humeroperoneal muscular dystrophy and contractures received a heart transplant for a severe dilated cardiomyopathy. Cardiac histopathology consisted of myocyte hypertrophy, interstitial fibrosis, and nuclear hyperchromaticity without mitochondrial abnormalities. Myopathy and heart disease were not clinically evident in her family, although three relatives had unexplained shortened Achilles tendons without weakness. Tendon contractures may be a partial expression of this myopathic disorder, suggesting an autosomal dominant inheritance with variable penetrance. A muscular dystrophy clinically similar to that of the Emery-Dreifuss (EDMD) type can thus occur in women. Rather than the cardiac arrhythmias typical of EDMD, a dilated cardiomyopathy may occur and present with severe congestive heart failure. This is the first report of cardiac transplantation in such a case.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biopsy
  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated / complications
  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated / pathology
  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated / surgery*
  • Female
  • Heart Transplantation*
  • Humans
  • Muscles / pathology
  • Muscular Dystrophies / complications*
  • Muscular Dystrophies / pathology