The diaphragm, a predictor of restrictive respiratory failure in DMD patients

Respiratory status is a key determinant of prognosis in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), the most common myopathy in children. The disease results in progressive muscle deficit predominantly at the root of the limbs and is accompanied by cardio-respiratory complications. 

A French team involving researchers and clinicians from the Institute of Myology aimed to assess the determining factors during ultrasound of the diaphragm in the prediction of restrictive respiratory patterns in DMD and its performance.

A retrospective study was conducted on 74 DMD patients followed in the center and admitted for an annual assessment from 2015 to 2018. The results show that the inspiratory movement as well as the diaphragm thickening fraction can predict restrictive pulmonary insufficiency in patients with DMD.