Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

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It is possible that the main title of the report Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita is not the name you expected.

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Arthrogryposis is a general or descriptive term for the development of nonprogressive contractures affecting one or more areas of the body prior to birth (congenitally). A contracture is a condition in which a joint becomes permanently fixed in a bent (flexed) or straightened (extended) position, completely or partially restricting the movement of the affected joint. When congenital contractures occur only in one body area, it is not referred to as arthrogryposis but rather an isolated congenital contracture. The most common form of an isolated congenital contracture is clubfoot. When arthrogryposis affects two or more different areas of the body, it may be referred to as arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC). The most common form of AMC is amyoplasia. Arthrogryposis and arthrogryposis multiplex congenita are sometimes used interchangeably.

The symptoms of AMC are present at birth (congenital). However, specific symptoms and physical findings can differ greatly in range and severity from one person to another. In most cases, affected infants have contractures of various joints. The joints of the legs and arms are usually affected, the legs are affected more often than the arms. The joints of the shoulders, elbows, knees, wrists, ankles, fingers, toes, and/or hips are also commonly affected. In addition, the jaws and back may also be affected in individuals with AMC. In most cases, AMC occurs randomly, for no apparent reason (sporadic). More than 400 different conditions can cause isolated or multiple contractures and the causes, genetics, specific symptoms, and severity of these disorders vary dramatically. Over 125 genes have been identified as responsible for different types of arthrogryposis.

Supporting Organizations

Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita Support, Inc.

P.O. Box 6291
Spartanburg, SC 29304

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center

PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311

March of Dimes

1275 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains, NY 10605
Tel: (914)997-4488
Fax: (914)997-4763
Email: or
Website: and

NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases

Information Clearinghouse
One AMS Circle
Bethesda, MD 20892-3675
Tel: (301)495-4484
Fax: (301)718-6366
Tel: (877)226-4267

The Arthrogryposis Group

45 Milton Road
United Kingdom
Tel: 0800 028 4447

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). For a full-text version of this report, go to and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report.

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

Last Updated:  3/21/2016
Copyright  2013 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.