Difference Between Atrophy and Dystrophy

Atrophy is a medical situation where a species loses its body muscles because of mutations, poor feeding, acute circulation, or even loss of hormonal support.

Muscular dystrophy is a genetic condition where a species suffers from progressive mass loss, weakening of muscles with time. Well, it's because of a lack of a protein called dystrophin that builds the muscles and allows them to function properly.

Comparison Table Between Atrophy and Dystrophy

Parameters of ComparisonAtrophyDystrophy
DefinitionAtrophy is a medical situation where a person suffers from loss of muscles due to several factors.Dystrophy is a genetic condition where a person loses its ability to function and power.
CausesAtrophy causes degeneration of muscles or even loss of mass of the body.Dystrophy is caused due to lack of protein that affects the functionality of muscles.
SymptomsThe muscle loss, weakness, loss of force, strength in muscles, and high tissue loss.There's gradual retardation in muscle, less strength, decreased movements like walking—mobility challenges.
TreatmentAtrophy can be cured by physiotherapy when you will keep doing regular exercise, improving nutrition and lifestyle.Dystrophy is a genetic challenge hence cannot be treated. But to eliminate pain to some extent, occupational therapies would work.
Risk wiseAtrophy is a mild problem that can be cured.Dystrophy is a risk-full disease, or even loss of life can happen.

What is Atrophy?

Well, atrophy is a challenge where a person suffers from mass loss due to lack of nutrition, acute scanty of food, suffering from some chronic or acute diseases like polio.

Cells at a certain age undergo atrophy, not under physiologic condition. This also results in a reduction in metabolic activities and a lack of active participation in any sort of sports or work.

The symptoms could be like your arms won't be similar anymore. Either one would shrink or maybe both. Weakness in one limb. Physically inactive for a long time. Inactive or lack of enthusiasm to participate in work and sports.

Before things go bad, it's important to consult a specialist who can recommend you physiotherapy that will eventually help you to become atrophy free.

What is Dystrophy?

Muscular dystrophy is a combination of genetic disease that destroys the body cells and organs that result in the weakening of muscles and power.

Well, most people lose the ability to walk and eventually, they need supporters or wheelchairs to facilitate themselves. Since it's a genetic challenge, there's no such cure, but various therapies can eliminate up to a larger extent.

Symptoms like trouble walking, loss of arm reflex, posture, lack of enthusiasm, bone thinning, lack of energy, breathing challenges, mild impairments, pain in joints, difficulty while standing and sitting, lung and heart weakness, swallowing challenges.

As said earlier, there's no treatment as such. But treatment include assisted ventilation, medication, surgeries to correct body postures, treating scoliosis, surgeries to treat cardiac problems.

Main Differences Between Atrophy and Dystrophy

  1. Atrophy can be treated since it's a disease that isn't genetic, while dystrophy has no treatment as such.
  2. Several surgeries and therapies will eventually help the patient, while only therapies can work to ease to some extent.
Difference Between Atrophy and Dystrophy


Atrophy and dystrophy are some severe challenges that might occur anytime. From kids to teenagers and adults, anyone could face these severe heartbreaking problems.

While dystrophy is an incurable disease that might occur in young kids. They can need wheelchairs to move around since it restricts the movement of muscles in the body. Exercising and having routine check-ups will help in many ways.


  1. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaneurology/article-abstract/587866
  2. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1016/j.nurt.2008.08.013
AskAnyDifference HomeClick here
Search for "Ask Any Difference" on Google. Rate this post!
[Total: 0]
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments