Affiliations: [a] Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria, Politecnico di Milano, Milano, Italy
Scientific Institute IRCCS E. Medea, Neuromuscular Unit, Bosisio Parini (Lecco) Italy | [c]
Dino Ferrari Centre, Neuroscience Section, Department of Pathophysiology and Transplantation (DEPT), Neurology Unit, IRCCS Foundation Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, University of Milan
Scientific Institute, IRCCS E. Medea- via don Luigi Monza, Bosisio P (Lecco) Italy
Correspondence to: Antonella LoMauro, Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria, Politecnico di Milano, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci, 20133 Milano Italy. E-mail: [email protected].
Abstract: With more widespread prolonged survival, Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients progressively experience multisystem complications. We retrospectively reviewed the charts of 132 Duchenne patients (112 alive/20 dead, age 3.5÷32.3 years) with the aims: 1) to provide a comprehensive description of the clinical status considering different aspects of the disease; 2) to propose a new scoring tool able to consider and pool together heterogeneous different functional. Five functions were analyzed: cardiac, respiratory, nutritional, ambulation and scoliosis. For each function, different items were considered and classified according to clinical severity (as indicated by international guidelines) and an incremental scoring was assigned. In addition, a global score incorporating all functions was defined. The scoring system confirmed that despite the significant protective role of steroids, all functions deteriorated with age. The severity of the global score became significantly higher since the age of 13 years. The severity of cardiac, respiratory and nutritional dysfunction was higher since 18 years. Deceased patients were characterized by significantly worse cardiac function, absence of steroid therapy and later use of respiratory assistive devices. The index proposed in this pilot study is a promising tool able to aggregate and correlate heterogeneous functions. It could become either an individual prognostic indicator of decline or a global score to evaluate changes in clinical trials therefore allowing multicenter studies, optimizing the management of both the primary and the secondary complications of the disease and understanding their relative impact.