Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Men's Health

Font Size
A
A
A

Kennedy Disease

Important
It is possible that the main title of the report Kennedy Disease 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

  • KD
  • SBMA
  • Kennedy's syndrome
  • spinal bulbar muscular atrophy
  • spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy
  • X-linked spinal bulbar muscular atrophy
  • X-linked spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Summary
Kennedy disease is a rare, X-linked slowly progressive neuro-muscular disorder. Kennedy disease is typically an adult-onset disease, where symptoms occur mainly between the ages of 20 and 50. The disease is characterized by symptoms such as muscle weakness and cramps in the arms, legs, and facial area, enlarged breasts, and difficulty with speaking and swallowing (dysphagia). Kennedy disease affects fewer than 1 in 150,000 males and does not typically occur in females, who are protected by their low levels of circulating testosterone, accounting for the sex-limited inheritance pattern in this disorder. Treatment is symptomatic and supportive and life expectancy is normal, though a small percentage of patients (~ 10%) succumb to the disease in their 60's or 70's.

Introduction
Kennedy disease is named after William R. Kennedy, MD, who described this condition in an abstract in 1966 and a full report in 1968.

Resources

National Ataxia Foundation
2600 Fernbrook Lane Suite 119
Minneapolis, MN 55447
USA
Tel: (763)553-0020
Fax: (763)553-0167
Email: naf@ataxia.org
Internet: http://www.ataxia.org

Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy
925 Busse Road
Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
Tel: (847)367-7620
Tel: (800)886-1762
Email: sma@fsma.org
Internet: http://www.fsma.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/

Kennedy's Disease Association
P.O. Box 1105
Coarsegold, CA 93614-1105
Tel: (559)658-5950
Fax: (559)658-5950
Email: info@kennedysdisease.org
Internet: http://www.kennedysdisease.org

MUMS National Parent-to-Parent Network
150 Custer Court
Green Bay, WI 54301-1243
USA
Email: mums@netnet.net
Internet: http://www.netnet.net/mums/

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
TDD: (888)205-3223
Internet: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/

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:  7/9/2012
Copyright  1994, 1996, 2003, 2012 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization of Rare Disorders

Last Updated: February 25, 2014
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.

Today on WebMD

Life Cycle of a Penis
Slideshow
Preacher Curl
Slideshow
 
testosterone molecule
Article
Xray of foot highlighting gout
Slideshow
 
Food Men 10 Foods Boost Male Health
Slideshow
Thoughtful man sitting on bed
Quiz
 
Man taking blood pressure
Slideshow
doctor holding syringe
Slideshow
 
Condom Quiz
Quiz
thumbnail_angry_couple_in_bed
Slideshow
 
man running
Quiz
woman holding hand to ear
Slideshow