Our mission is to save and improve lives for people fighting muscle disease.

What is MDA? 
MDA is the world’s leading nonprofit health agency dedicated to finding treatments and cures for muscular 
dystrophy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and other neuromuscular diseases. It does so by funding worldwide 
research; by providing comprehensive health care services and support to MDA families nationwide; and by 
rallying communities to fight back through advocacy, fundraising and local engagement. 
What is muscular dystrophy? 
Muscular dystrophy refers to a group of genetic muscle diseases marked by progressive degeneration of voluntary 
muscles. MDA’s program includes nine main forms of muscular dystrophy and more than 30 other neuromuscular 
diseases which vary in genetic basis, age of onset, rate of progression and muscles affected. 
What does MDA do to fight muscular dystrophy and related neuromuscular diseases? 
MDA supports nearly 250 research projects worldwide in the search for treatments and cures for the more than 40 
diseases in its program, including ALS, spinal muscular atrophy and the muscular dystrophies. 
How does MDA help in the San Diego community? 
MDA has the most comprehensive program of any voluntary health agency in the country, providing the following 

  • Clinics — MDA’s hospital-affiliated clinics are staffed by top health professionals skilled in the diagnosis and medical management of neuromuscular diseases. Services may include occupational, physical and respiratory therapy; diagnostic tests; genetic counseling; and more at Rady’s Children Hospital, which sees the 1,050 families affected by a form of muscular dystrophy in the San Diego community.
  • Summer camp — Local youngsters ages 6-17 with neuromuscular diseases can attend a free week of camp, with barrier-free activities like fishing, dancing, games, arts & crafts, and more at Camp Cuyamaca in Descanso, CA.
  • Support groups — Local groups offer emotional and practical support to individuals affected by neuromuscular disease, their families and caregivers.  MDA San Diego offers over six support groups for our families in the community.
  • Equipment help — MDA accepts donations of gently used durable medical equipment, repairs these items as needed, and provides them to individuals with neuromuscular disease to enhance mobility, independence and quality of life.
  • Free annual flu shots
  • Advocacy and community outreach
  • Public and professional health education — MDA provides the latest research and health care news in print and online (mda.org); sponsors educational conferences; and offers informational publications covering all the diseases under MDA’s umbrella, plus MDA programs and services.
The Muscular Dystrophy Association San Diego
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