Congenital myopathies

Handb Clin Neurol. 2013;113:1321-36. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-444-59565-2.00004-6.


Congenital myopathies are a heterogeneous group of inherited muscle disorders, characterized by the predominance of particular histopathological features on muscle biopsy, such as cores (central core disease) or rods (nemaline myopathy). Clinically, early onset of the disease, stable or slowly progressive muscle weakness, hypotonia and delayed motor development are common in most forms. As a result, the diagnosis of a subtype of congenital myopathy is largely based on the presence of specific structural abnormalities in the skeletal muscle detected by enzyme-histochemistry and electron microscopy studies. During the last decades there have been significant advances in the identification of the genetic basis of most congenital myopathies. However, there is significant genetic heterogeneity within the main groups of congenital myopathies, and mutations in one particular gene may also cause diverse clinical and morphological phenotypes. Thus, the nosography and nosology in this field is still evolving.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Humans
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology*
  • Muscular Diseases / congenital*
  • Muscular Diseases / genetics
  • Muscular Diseases / pathology*
  • Mutation