Is patient experiencing impending respiratory failure

Hypotonia, especially when associated with muscle weakness, may result in respiratory compromise. Evaluate airway patency, protection, and efficacy of respiratory effort.

B. Is inability to sit due to muscle weakness, hypotonia, or both? Answer helps narrow differential diagnosis and guide immediate approach. In patients who have CNS causes of hypo-tonia, muscle weakness is not present; these patients have preserved deep tendon reflexes or hyperreflexia. Patients who have diseases affecting the lower motor neuron usually have both weakness and hypotonia and, if the anterior horn cell or peripheral motor neuron is involved, have diminished or absent reflexes.

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