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Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease

Related Terms

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Background

  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT), also called hereditary motor sensory neuropathy and peroneal muscular atrophy, is an inherited disorder that causes nerve damage, or neuropathy. This nerve damage worsens over time.
  • The disease affects the myelin sheath, which is the fatty substance that insulates the nerves. Myelin is needed to transmit impulses along nerve cells. In CMT, genetic mutations cause the peripheral nerves to become damaged or the myelin to become dysfunctional, which makes the nerves vulnerable to damage.
  • The disorder typically causes muscle weakness and sometimes numbness in the arms, legs, hands, and feet. Symptoms usually develop during adolescence or early adulthood, but they may occur at any time from early childhood into middle age.
  • CMT is the most common hereditary form of neuropathy, affecting about one in 2,500 people worldwide. It is estimated that 150,000 people in the United States have CMT.
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Risk Factors

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Causes

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Signs and Symptoms

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Types of the Disease

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Diagnosis

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Complications

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Treatment

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Integrative Therapies

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Prevention

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Author Information

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References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

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The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.