It was World’s Down Syndrome day on March 21st. A day set aside for people with Down syndrome and those who live and work with them throughout the world to organize and participate in activities and events to raise public awareness and create a single global voice for advocating for the rights, inclusion and well being of people with Down syndrome. You’re probably wondering what Down Syndrome means – Well, it is referred to as a congenital disorder arising from a chromosome defect, causing intellectual impairment and physical abnormalities including short stature and a broad facial profile. It arises from a defect involving chromosome 21, usually an extra copy (trisomy-21). No one prays to have a child with Down Syndrome ever but it does happen. INFORMATION NIGERIA just so you are well informed brings you everything you need to know about the condition…
– It wasn’t until the late nineteenth century, however, that John Langdon Down, an English physician, published an accurate description of a person with Down syndrome. It was this scholarly work, published in 1866, that earned Down the recognition as the “father” of the syndrome. Although other people had previously recognized the characteristics of the syndrome, it was Down who described the condition as a distinct and separate entity.
– There are three types of Down syndrome: trisomy 21 (nondisjunction), translocation and mosaicism.
– Regardless of the type of Down syndrome a person may have, all people with Down syndrome have an extra, critical portion of chromosome 21 present in all or some of their cells. This additional genetic material alters the course of development and causes the characteristics associated with Down syndrome.
– There is no definitive scientific research that indicates that Down syndrome is caused by environmental factors or the parents’ activities before or during pregnancy.
– Down syndrome occurs in people of all races and economic levels, though older women have an increased chance of having a child with Down syndrome.
– Down syndrome is usually identified at birth by the presence of certain physical traits: low muscle tone, a single deep crease across the palm of the hand, a slightly flattened facial profile, an upward slant to the eyes, the neck may have excess fat and skin and some children also have a wide space between the big toe and second toe.
– Also the child’s tongue may partly stick out. The roof of the mouth (palate) may be narrow and high with a downward curve, teeth often come in late and not in the same order that other children’s teeth come in,
– However, because these features may be present in babies without Down syndrome, a chromosomal analysis called a karyotype is done to confirm the diagnosis.
– Individuals with Down syndrome are living longer than ever before. In 1910, children with Down syndrome were expected to survive to age nine. With the discovery of antibiotics, the average survival age increased to 19 or 20. Now, with recent advancements in clinical treatment, most particularly corrective heart surgeries, as many as 80% of adults with Down syndrome reach age 60, and many live even longer.
We hope you have learned a thing or two!!!