What is Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP)?
One of the rarest, most disabling genetic conditions known to medicine, FOP causes bone to form in muscles, tendons, ligaments and other connective tissues. Bridges of extra bone develop across joints, progressively restricting movement and forming a second skeleton that imprisons the body in bone. There are no other known examples in medicine of one normal organ system turning into another.
Demographics of FOP:
Rare, progressive genetic disorder that has an estimated prevalence of 0.88 per 1 million US residents, or approximately a prevalence of 1 in 1 million.
No ethnic, racial, or gender patterns
Approximately 900 confirmed cases worldwide
Clinical Characteristics of FOP:
Malformation of the great toes is visible at birth
Flare-ups that worsen the condition occur spontaneously or following viral illnesses or physical trauma to the muscle such as: intramuscular childhood immunizations, falls, surgery, biopsy
Rogue bone growth progressively restricts movement
Often misdiagnosed as cancer
The exact rate of progression is unpredictable, although there appears to be a pattern to the progression (e.g., upper body in childhood and lower body in adolescence)
For more information visit https://www.ifopa.org