What is Down Syndrome?
- Down syndrome is the most commonly occurring chromosomal abnormality, resulting when an individual possesses three, rather than the usual two, copies of the 21st chromosome.
- This excess genetic material affects a person's physical and cognitive development. People with Down syndrome will have some degree of Intellectual Disability, usually in the mild to moderate range.
- There are many characteristics associated with Down syndrome, including low muscle tone, an enlarged tongue, a flat facial profile, and increased risk of related medical conditions.
What are some basic facts about Down syndrome?
- The medical name for Down syndrome is Trisomy 21. Down syndrome occurs at conception and is not because of something the mother did during pregnancy at all.
- It is a random occurrence.
What causes Down syndrome?
- It is stated that 95% of all cases is caused by an error in cell division called nondisjunction.
- Few cases are caused by two other chromosomal abnormalities: mosaicism and translocation.
- The additional genetic material alters the course of development and causes the characteristics associated with Down syndrome.
- One in every 800-1,000 live births is a child with Down Syndrome, representing approx 30,000 birth per year in India.
How is down syndrome diagnosed ?
- The diagnosis of Down syndrome is usually picked up soon after the birth of the baby because of the way it looks.
- There are many physical characteristics associated with the condition, which may lead a parent, or medical professional to suspect that the baby has Down syndrome.
- Many of these features are found in the general population. Therefore a chromosome test would need to be done on the baby before a positive diagnosis could be made. Taking blood from the baby and then analyzing the chromosomes does this. The result is called a karyotype.
Is there a vaccine you can take to cure for prevent Down syndrome?
- No, there is not a vaccine to prevent or cure Down syndrome.
Is there a cure for Down syndrome?
- Currently, there is no cure for Down syndrome.