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    MERRF Syndrome

    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 www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

    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.

    WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization for Rare Disorders

    Last Updated: May 28, 2015
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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