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MERRF Syndrome

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

Important

It is possible that the main title of the report MERRF Syndrome is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

Synonyms

  • MERRF
  • Fukuhara syndrome
  • myoclonus epilepsy associated with ragged red fibers
  • myoencephalopathy ragged-red fiber disease

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

MERRF (Myoclonus Epilepsy with Ragged-Red Fibers) syndrome is an extremely rare disorder that begins in childhood and affects the nervous system and skeletal muscle as well as other body systems. The distinguishing feature in MERRF is myoclonus, consisting of sudden, brief, jerking spasms that can affect the arms and legs or the entire body. In addition, individuals with MERRF syndrome may have muscle weakness (myopathy), an impaired ability to coordinate movements (ataxia), seizures, and a slow deterioration of intellectual function (dementia). Short stature, degeneration of the optic nerve (optic atrophy), hearing loss, cardiomyopathy and abnormal sensation from nerve damage (peripheral neuropathy) are also common symptoms. Abnormal muscle cells are present and appear as ragged red fibers (RRF) when stained with the modified Gomori trichrome and viewed microscopically. MERRF is caused by mutations in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA).

Resources

CLIMB (Children Living with Inherited Metabolic Diseases)

Climb Building

176 Nantwich Road

Crewe, CW2 6BG

United Kingdom

Tel: 4408452412173

Fax: 4408452412174

Email: enquiries@climb.org.uk

Internet: http://www.CLIMB.org.uk



United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation

8085 Saltsburg Road Suite 201

Pittsburgh, PA 15239

United States

Tel: (412)793-8077

Fax: (412)793-6477

Tel: (888)317-8633

Email: info@umdf.org

Internet: http://www.umdf.org



Lactic Acidosis Support Trust

1A Whitley Close

Middlewich

Cheshire, CW10 0NQ

United Kingdom

Tel: 0160683719

Fax: 01606837198



Epilepsy Foundation

8301 Professional Place

Landover, MD 20785-7223

Tel: (866)330-2718

Fax: (877)687-4878

Tel: (800)332-1000

TDD: (800)332-2070

Email: ContactUs@efa.org

Internet: http://www.epilepsyfoundation.org



Muscular Dystrophy Association

3300 East Sunrise Drive

Tucson, AZ 85718-3208

USA

Tel: (520)529-2000

Fax: (520)529-5300

Tel: (800)572-1717

Email: mda@mdausa.org

Internet: http://www.mda.org/



NIH/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

P.O. Box 5801

Bethesda, MD 20824

Tel: (301)496-5751

Fax: (301)402-2186

Tel: (800)352-9424

TDD: (301)468-5981

Internet: http://www.ninds.nih.gov/



Mitochondrial Disease Support Group Online

5022 Michigan Avenue

West Palm Beach, FL 33415

Tel: (407)641-4712

Email: madmolmom@gmail.com

Internet: http://www.mitosupport.org/



Vereniging voor Kinder met Stofwisselingsziekten

P.O. Box 664

Bloemendalstraat 11

Zwolle, 8000 AR

The Netherlands

Tel: 0384201764

Fax: 0384201447

Email: info@stofwisselingsziekten.nl

Internet: http://www.stofwisselingsziekten.nl



Children's Mitochondrial Disease Network

Mayfield House

30 Heber Walk

Chester Way

Northwich

England, CW9 5JB

United Kingdom

Tel: 440160643946

Fax: 440160643946

Email: info@cmdn.org.uk

Internet: http://www.emdn-mitonet.co.uk/



Madisons Foundation

PO Box 241956

Los Angeles, CA 90024

Tel: (310)264-0826

Fax: (310)264-4766

Email: getinfo@madisonsfoundation.org

Internet: http://www.madisonsfoundation.org



MitoAction

14 Pembroke Street

Medford, MA 02155

Tel: (888)648-6228

Fax: (888)648-6228

Email: info@mitoaction.org

Internet: http://www.MitoAction.org



For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to MyD-H, the Dartmouth-Hitchcock patient portal. You must be a registered MyD-H user for the Lebanon, Manchester, or Nashua locations to access this site.

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site www.rarediseases.org or email orphan@rarediseases.org

Last Updated:  9/30/2010

Copyright  1993, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2010 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

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