Dystrophic muscle distribution in late-stage muscular dystrophy

Autops Case Rep. 2020 Nov 20;10(4):e2020221. doi: 10.4322/acr.2020.221.


There is scant information about the comprehensive distribution of dystrophic muscles in muscular dystrophy. Despite different clinical presentations of muscular dystrophy, a recent multi-center study concluded that phenotypic distribution of dystrophic muscles is independent of clinical phenotype and suggested that there is a common pattern of involved muscles. To evaluate this possibility, the present case report used cadaveric dissection to determine the whole-body distribution of fat-infiltrated, dystrophic muscles from a 72-year-old white male cadaver with adult-onset, late-stage muscular dystrophy. Severely dystrophic muscles occupied the pectoral, gluteal and pelvic regions, as well as the arm, thigh and posterior leg. In contrast, muscles of the head, neck, hands and feet largely appeared unaffected. Histopathology and a CT-scan supported these observations. This pattern of dystrophic muscles generally conformed with that described in the multi-center study, and provides prognostic insight for patients and the physicians treating them.

Keywords: Cadaver, Muscular Dystrophy, Limb-Girdle; Muscular Dystrophies; Musculoskeletal System.