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Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is the most prevalent and lethal of the inherited dystrophies.  Globally, the incidence is reported at 1 in 3500 live male births. There is currently no cure for the disease. With the possibility of gene therapy becoming available, patients who would qualify for such treatment need to be identified. Further, understanding disease expression in a population is essential to focus targeted interventions, such as corticosteroids, to ensure they are safe and effective in the local setting. By maintaining a DMD specific disease registry this information can be attained.

Objective: This report describes the concept and design of the first South African DMD disease registry using Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap) 

Methods: The registry was developed using REDCap’s web-based online design, accessed through the Clinical Research Centre (CRC) in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town.  Electronic case report forms were created from these clinical data using REDCap and for specific variables serial entries were possible relating to disease progression. International data standards were adopted as proposed by TREAT-NMD, a global network of registries on DMD to ensure our data is compatible with this and other international registries.

Results: Retrospective data entry combined with dynamic prospective recording of data was utilized in this project. Building on an existing database, 100 confirmed DMD boys are currently eligible for inclusion into the registry.

 As our registry is an on-going study, sequential analysis of accumulated data will be done going forward to review trends on our patients with DMD.


Conclusions: This report describes the concept and design of a DMD registry and the steps followed to its establishment with REDCap. The focus is to consolidate clinical and genetic information on South African patients with DMD, commencing with the local centre’s patient cohort but rolling out access to other South African centres to create a national resource, which is internationally relevant.  Ideally this template could be duplicated in the conceptualisation of disease registries for other key conditions.





Article Details

Author Biographies

Alhaji Alusine Jalloh, University of Cape Town University of Sierra Leone Government of Sierra Leone

Department of Paediatric Neurology

Red Cross war Memorial Childrens Hospital

University of Cape Town

Wendy Mathiassen, University of Cape Town

Department of Paediatric Cardiology, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Faculty of Health Sciences,

Tina-Marié Wessels, University of Cape Town

Department of Human Genetics, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town

Alvin Ndondo, University of Cape Town

Department of Paedaitric Neurology

Jo M Wilmshurst, University of Cape Town

Department of Paediatric Neurology
How to Cite
Jalloh, A. A., Mathiassen, W., Wessels, T.-M., Ndondo, A., & Wilmshurst, J. M. (2019). Development of a Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy registry for children in South Africa to optimize care. Journal of the International Child Neurology Association, 1(1).

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