Neuromuscular Disorders

We offer the state's most comprehensive program for these disorders, ensuring you get the most complete, sophisticated care

Neuromuscular disorders damage the nerve endings, or neurons, in the brain and spinal cord, hurting their ability to send messages to the muscles that control body movements.

Muscles eventually weaken and waste away. Although most neuromuscular disorders are incurable, our expert physicians at can help you manage symptoms.

The Indiana University Health Neuroscience Center is Indiana's most comprehensive care program for neuromuscular disorders, ensuring you get the most complete, sophisticated care. Your IU Health Neuroscience Center team has extensive experience treating a wide range of neuromuscular disorders, including:

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Abetalipoproteinemia
  • Dermatomyositis
  • Friedreich's ataxia
  • Muscular dystrophy (MD)
  • Myasthenia gravis (MG)
  • Myopathy
  • Neuromyotonia
  • Neuropathy
  • Polymyositis
  • Trigeminal neuralgia

Overview

The Indiana University Health Neuroscience Center is Indiana's most comprehensive care program for neuromuscular disorders, ensuring you get the most complete, sophisticated care. Your IU Health Neuroscience Center team has extensive experience treating a wide range of neuromuscular disorders, including:

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Abetalipoproteinemia
  • Dermatomyositis
  • Friedreich's ataxia
  • Muscular dystrophy (MD)
  • Myasthenia gravis (MG)
  • Myopathy
  • Neuromyotonia
  • Neuropathy
  • Polymyositis
  • Trigeminal neuralgia

Your IU Health neurologists and neurosurgeons have decades of experience and use the latest technology to make a diagnosis.

They will use the most current technology—including single-fiber electromyography (EMG) to detect nerve-to-muscle messaging—to confirm your diagnosis. Single-fiber EMG, considered the most conclusive test for myasthenia gravis, can otherwise provide difficulties in diagnosing. The IU Health Neuroscience Center is one of the only centers in Indiana to provide single-fiber EMG.

Additional diagnostic testing includes:

  • Blood test
  • Spinal tap
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Muscle or nerve biopsy
  • Nerve conduction studies
  • Genetic testing
  • Antibody testing
  • Repetitive nerve stimulation

Diagnosis

Your IU Health neurologists and neurosurgeons have decades of experience and use the latest technology to make a diagnosis.

They will use the most current technology—including single-fiber electromyography (EMG) to detect nerve-to-muscle messaging—to confirm your diagnosis. Single-fiber EMG, considered the most conclusive test for myasthenia gravis, can otherwise provide difficulties in diagnosing. The IU Health Neuroscience Center is one of the only centers in Indiana to provide single-fiber EMG.

Additional diagnostic testing includes:

  • Blood test
  • Spinal tap
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Muscle or nerve biopsy
  • Nerve conduction studies
  • Genetic testing
  • Antibody testing
  • Repetitive nerve stimulation

Through participation in clinical research, your physicians can provide faster access to advanced treatments. Your neurologists will customize treatment plans to fit your unique situation and recommend services to help you adapt to your condition. Your care may include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Adaptive devices
  • Support groups
  • Psychosocial therapy

Advanced treatment procedures for neuromuscular disorders focus on managing your symptoms and relieving your pain. They may include:

  • Surgery. When appropriate, your neurosurgeon removes your thymus gland for treatment of myasthenia gravis.
  • Microvascular decompression for treatment of trigeminal neuralgia. For this procedure, your neurosurgeon makes a small incision just behind your ear and then uses tiny instruments to lift blood vessels off the trigeminal nerve root, relieving pressure. Your neurosurgeon then inserts a tiny implant, which acts as a cushion between the vessels and the nerve, to provide permanent relief. Neurosurgeons at the IU Health Neuroscience Center offered this procedure first.

Treatment

Through participation in clinical research, your physicians can provide faster access to advanced treatments. Your neurologists will customize treatment plans to fit your unique situation and recommend services to help you adapt to your condition. Your care may include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Adaptive devices
  • Support groups
  • Psychosocial therapy

Advanced treatment procedures for neuromuscular disorders focus on managing your symptoms and relieving your pain. They may include:

  • Surgery. When appropriate, your neurosurgeon removes your thymus gland for treatment of myasthenia gravis.
  • Microvascular decompression for treatment of trigeminal neuralgia. For this procedure, your neurosurgeon makes a small incision just behind your ear and then uses tiny instruments to lift blood vessels off the trigeminal nerve root, relieving pressure. Your neurosurgeon then inserts a tiny implant, which acts as a cushion between the vessels and the nerve, to provide permanent relief. Neurosurgeons at the IU Health Neuroscience Center offered this procedure first.

The following external websites include information about neuromuscular disorders, tests, procedures, treatment and wellness:

  • Medline Plus: This is the National Institutes of Health's Website for patients and their families and includes information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues.
  • MDA: This website aims to empower families with services and support for neuromuscular disorders.

Resources

The following external websites include information about neuromuscular disorders, tests, procedures, treatment and wellness:

  • Medline Plus: This is the National Institutes of Health's Website for patients and their families and includes information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues.
  • MDA: This website aims to empower families with services and support for neuromuscular disorders.

Patient Stories for Neuromuscular Disorders