Quick Answer: How Can You Prevent Microcephaly?

What percentile is considered microcephaly?

Microcephaly is defined as a head circumference 2 standard deviations (SDs) below the mean for age and sex or roughly less than the 2nd percentile.

Conversely, macrocephaly is defined as a head circumference greater than 2 SDs above the mean or greater than the 98th percentile..

Can microcephaly go away?

Microcephaly is a lifelong condition. There is no known cure or standard treatment for microcephaly. Because microcephaly can range from mild to severe, treatment options can range as well. Babies with mild microcephaly often don’t experience any other problems besides small head size.

What is the cause of microcephaly?

Causes of congenital microcephaly include: Prenatal infections: Exposure to the Zika virus, especially in the first trimester of pregnancy, can damage nerve cells in the brain. Other infectious agents can also cause microcephaly, including rubella (German measles), chickenpox, toxoplasma and cytomegalovirus.

Can you have microcephaly and be normal?

Microcephaly in children is a rare and genetic condition. Some children with microcephaly are both with normal intelligence and have normal developmental milestones, but their heads will always be smaller than normal children for their age and sex. Even in such cases, a regular follow-up with the doctor is advised.

What is the life expectancy of microcephaly?

There is no standard life expectancy for microcephalic babies because outcomes depend on so many factors, and the severity of the condition can range from mild to severe. Babies with mild microcephaly may still meet the same milestones like speaking, sitting and walking as a child without the disorder.

Does a small head always mean microcephaly?

Microcephaly is a birth defect in which a baby’s head is smaller than expected, compared to babies of the same sex and age. Babies with mild microcephaly often don’t have problems other than small head size.

At what age is microcephaly diagnosed?

Diagnosis. Early diagnosis of microcephaly can sometimes be made by fetal ultrasound. Ultrasounds have the best diagnosis possibility if they are made at the end of the second trimester, around 28 weeks, or in the third trimester of pregnancy. Often diagnosis is made at birth or at a later stage.

How does microcephaly affect a child?

But depending on the cause and severity of the microcephaly, complications may include: Developmental delays, such as in speech and movement. Difficulties with coordination and balance. Dwarfism or short stature.

Does microcephaly cause retardation?

Signs and symptoms of microcephaly may include a smaller than normal head circumference that usually remains smaller than normal as the child grows, dwarfism or short stature, delayed motor and speech functions, mental retardation, seizures, facial distortions, hyperactivity, balance and coordination problems, and …

How is microcephaly transmitted?

Zika virus can be transmitted from mother to fetus during pregnancy, resulting in microcephaly (smaller than normal head size) and other congenital malformations in the infant, collectively referred to as congenital Zika syndrome. Microcephaly is caused by underlying abnormal brain development or loss of brain tissue.

Can microcephaly be genetic?

Microcephaly is an autosomal recessive gene disorder. Autosomal means that boys and girls are equally affected. Recessive means that 2 copies of the gene, 1 from each parent, are needed to have the condition. Some genetic disorders that cause microcephaly are X-linked.

Do pinheads exist today?

Occasional cases develop normal intelligence and grow normally (apart from persistently small head circumference). It is reported that in the United States, microcephaly occurs in 2 to 12 babies per 10,000 births.

Can microcephaly be detected at 20 week ultrasound?

Although microcephaly and intracranial calcifications are typically detected during ultrasounds in the late second and early third trimester of pregnancy, these findings might be detected as early as 18-20 weeks gestation.

Can microcephaly be misdiagnosed?

Recently, microcephaly has usually been misdiagnosed only by ultrasound via measurement of head circumfer- ence (HC). Different literatures use different standards for diagnosis of microcephaly with head circumference.

What is secondary microcephaly?

Secondary microcephaly occurs when the brain, roughly normal in size at birth, does not grow thereafter. Brain infection, traumatic brain injury, and oxygen deprivation in the brain are causes of postnatal onset.