Hypotonia

Understanding muscle related symptoms and features

Symptoms may affect multiple parts of the body. Understanding which part of the body a symptom affects, can help us to better understand the potential underlying causes of a symptom, including a rare disease or genetic syndrome.

The muscular system contains three muscle types: cardiac, smooth and skeletal. The muscular system affects multiple parts and functions of the body including: movement, balance, stability and posture, circulation, respiration, digestion, urination and childbirth.

Symptoms affecting the muscles can not for the most part be seen with the naked eye. Diagnosing a muscle related symptom may involve different tests and assessments, both subjective and objective.

Symptoms relating to the muscles may affect their function and tone. They may also affect the structure of the muscles, regardless of how big or small (macro and/or microscopically) this change in the structure might be.

What is Hypotonia?

Hypotonia, or low muscle tone as it is often known, reduces the strength and tone of the muscle. This in turn impacts on the movement ability, the physical strength and flexibility of an individual with the symptom . In babies it may present as floppy baby syndrome and is usually detected at birth or soon after.
Hypotonia may be the result of a genetic syndrome. It may also be caused by damage to the brain, spine or any of the nerves and muscles of the body. Ongoing research into the symptom suggests it may also be caused by environmental factors in a number of cases.

What should I do next?

In some instances low muscle tone may be one of the features of a rare disease or genetic syndrome. In this case fast, targeted genetic analysis can give you a more accurate diagnosis.

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