Introduction: Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is characterized by absence of the subsarcolemmal protein dystrophin, present in skeletal muscles and cardiomyocytes. We hypothesized that progressive respiratory and left ventricular (LV) insufficiencies in DMD could be parallel and interrelated phenomena. Methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review of 27 patients with DMD. Our primary objective was to compare the rates of decline between pulmonary function test (PFT) measures (forced expiratory volume in the first second, forced vital capacity, peak expiratory flow rate, maximal inspiratory/expiratory pressure) and echocardiographic estimates of LV end-diastolic volume and LV ejection fraction. Results: The rates of decline/year of PFTs and LV estimates were not significantly different. Pulmonary function test measures of ventilatory efficiency and strength had strong intercorrelations. Pulmonary function tests and LV estimates had weak but statistically significant correlations. Discussion: A comparable rate of decline in PFTs and LV indices in DMD provides evidence for concurrently progressive deterioration in respiratory and LV functions. Muscle Nerve, 2019.
- Duchenne muscular dystrophy
- forced vital capacity
- left ventricular ejection fraction
- left ventricular end-diastolic volume
- pulmonary function test