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Gowers-Welander syndrome

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A type of muscular dystrophy observed in Sweden, occasionally in other areas. It begins as paresis and atrophy of the extensor and small muscles of the distal portion of the extremities and spreads proximally. Onset of symptoms, usually weakness and clumsiness of the hands, usually occurs between the ages of 40 and 60. As affected children have also been reported, the condition may be congenital. Aetiology unknown. Autosomal dominant inheritance is probable.


  • W. R. Gowers:
    A lecture on myopathy of a distal form.
    British Medical Journal, London, 1902, 2: 89-92.
  • L. Welander:
    Hereditär handmuskelatrofi.
    Nordisk Medicin, Stockholm, 1945, 26: 1019. Myopathia distalis tarda hereditaria: 249 examined cases in 72 pedigrees.
    Acta medica scandinavica. Supplementum 265, Stockholm, 1951, 141: 1-124.

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