Adolescent years

As the disease continues to progress through the adolescent years, weakness in the muscles typically accelerates and other signs and symptoms may become apparent:

  • Overwhelming fatigue
  • Respiratory compromise or muscle weakness leading to respiratory infections
  • Grooved tongue (with deep fissures, cracks, and grooves)
  • Gradual decline in muscle effectiveness (muscle atrophy)
  • Arm and leg weakness
  • Joint instability
  • Joint dislocation
  • Numbness and tingling or pain in hands and feet
  • Diminished or lack of deep tendon reflexes (areflexia)
  • Inability to sense the orientation of body parts and balance issues (proprioception)
  • Difficulties with balance and proprioception (inability to sense)
  • Decreased response to touch below the knee
  • High arches and drop foot (difficulty lifting the front part of the foot) or flat feet