Muscle abnormalities or myopathy is a medical term that refers to several conditions of muscle disorders in the body. Abnormalities in muscles can be caused by a variety of things, both related to genetic or non-genetic disorders, such as muscle injury and excessive muscle use, inflammation, infection, use of certain drugs, cancer, and neurological diseases that affect muscles. Some cases of muscle abnormalities are not even known the exact cause.
Muscle abnormalities based on the cause
Broadly speaking, abnormalities in muscles can be categorized into two, namely derived disorders (inherited) and abnormalities obtained (obtained).
Some of the conditions included in congenital muscle disorders :
- Muscular dystrophy
Muscular dystrophy is a congenital abnormality that causes gradual decrease and weakness of muscle mass. Conditions that include muscular dystrophy include Duchenne muscular dystrophy, Becker muscular dystrophy, myotonic dystrophy, facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy, and limb and body muscular dystrophy (Limb-girdle dystrophy).
- Congenital myopathy
This type of muscle disorder is usually characterized by a delay in the development of motor skills, as well as skeletal and facial muscle abnormalities from birth. This type of muscle disorder began to be seen from birth or before the age of 2 years. Core myopathy and core myopathy are common types of congenital myopathies.
- Mitochondrial myopathy
Myopathy is caused by a genetic disorder in the mitochondria, which is a component in cells that functions to produce energy.
- Metabolic myopathy
Muscle abnormalities can also occur due to problems with enzymes in the body that play a role in muscle metabolism. Metabolic muscle disorders can be caused by several conditions, such as carnitine deficiency, abnormalities of fatty acid oxidation, carnitine palmitoyl transferase deficiency, glycogen storage disorders, maltase acid deficiency (Pompe disease).
Acquired muscle disorders are grouped into four :
- Inflammatory myopathy
Muscle abnormalities caused by chronic muscle inflammation. Common inflammatory myopathies are polymyositis and dermatomyositis. Polymyositis affects skeletal muscle on both sides of the body and generally occurs in the age range of 30 and 60 years. Signs and symptoms of polymyositis vary from person to person. Muscle weakness that is not treated immediately can cause difficulty in swallowing, difficulty speaking, difficulty standing, and difficulty walking or climbing stairs.
Some people with polymyositis can also experience arthritis, shortness of breath, arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats), or congestive heart failure. While dermatomyositis muscle abnormalities are characterized by the appearance of skin rashes accompanied by muscle weakness. Adults with dermatomyositis may experience weight loss or mild fever, pneumonia, and be sensitive to light. Both are also closely related to collagen-vascular disease or autoimmune diseases such as lupus. Polymyositis is also associated with HIV infection that causes AIDS.
- Myopathy infection
This is a muscle disorder caused by viral, bacterial and parasitic infections. Viral infections that cause myopathy include HIV, influenza virus and Epstein-Barr virus. While bacterial and parasitic infections that can cause muscle abnormalities are infection with Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus, Spirochaeta (the cause of Lyme disease), and parasitic infection Trichinella (the cause of trichinosis). In very rare cases, fungal infections can also cause muscle abnormalities.
- Myopathy due to drugs (toxic myopathy)
Muscle disorders or abnormalities can also be caused by side effects of certain drugs, such as corticosteroids, cholesterol-lowering drugs statin, antimalarial chloroquine drugs, colchicine, gout and drug drugs such as cocaine. Alcoholic drinks and toxic chemicals can also be the cause.
- Myopathy associated with systemic diseases
This type of myopathy occurs due to a disease that attacks certain organ systems in the body. This type of muscle disorder can be caused by many diseases such as thyroid disorders, autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, electrolyte disorders, poor nutrition, and critical illness myopathy or muscle abnormalities due to critical conditions in patients who are too long in the ICU.
Symptoms and Treatment of Muscle Disorders
The main symptom of myopathy or muscle abnormalities is muscle weakness caused by abnormalities in muscle fibers. This muscle weakness can affect muscles throughout the body, such as eye muscles, face, arms, legs, muscles to swallow, muscles to talk, even breathing muscles. Other symptoms can include muscle aches, cramps, stiff muscles, and muscle spasms. Muscle abnormalities in children are usually characterized by problems of growth and development, such as late talking, standing, or walking.
Muscle abnormal conditions require immediate medical examination and treatment, especially if the symptoms have disrupted daily activities, such as fatigue, muscle atrophy, difficulty moving, difficulty walking, difficulty grasping something, as well as prolonged muscle weakness that is getting worse and has occurred for more than a few weeks . If there are any of these symptoms, consult a doctor immediately.
The impact of muscle disorders on each person can be different. Some people can live a normal life, but others experience disruption in their activities, paralysis, to various conditions that can be fatal.
Management of muscle disorders depends on the underlying disease or condition. Muscle abnormalities caused by genetic factors are generally incurable, and treatment is only supportive. For acquired muscle abnormalities after birth, doctors can provide treatment in the form of drug therapy, physiotherapy, bracing to support weakened muscles, to surgery.