Congenital Anomalies & Their Incidence Rates Wadie Waterman
In General… • Congenital anomalies are also known as birth defects • About 3-4% of babies are born with congenital anomalies • Most occur due to environmental and genetic factors • Often the causes are unknown • Many parents assume that all birth defects are severe or even fatal, but the fact is that many are treatable, often immediately after birth — and sometimes even before the baby is born.
Genetic and Environmental Causes • Inheritance • Chromosome abnormalities • Single gene defects • Multifactorial inheritance (many factors involved) • Teratogens (a birth defect causing agent like alcohol abuse)
Most Common • Cleft lip and palate • Can occur separately on in conjunction with one another • Unilateral or bilateral • Occur 1 per every 500-700 births
Most Common • Syndactyly & polydactyly • Syndactyly occurs when a newborns digits fail to separate, resulting in webbed hands or feet • Polydactyly is the complete or partial duplication of digits
Most Common • Radial Dysplasia & Hyperplasia • “clubhand” • Failure of the radius and adjacent soft tissues to fully develop
Congenital Heart Defects • Approximately 8 out of every 1,000 newborns have congenital heart defects, ranging from mild to severe. • Result in incomplete or abnormal development of the fetus’ heart during very early stages of pregnancy. • Usually causes are unknown but can be associated with genetic disorders. • Common ones: • Aortic Stenosis • Atrial Septal Defect • Atrioventricular Canal Defect • Coarction of the Aorta • Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome • Pulmonary Atresia • Pulmonary Stenosis
Congenital Brain Defects • Spina Bifida • Meningomyelocele • Hydroencephalus • Schizencephaly (split brain) • Megalencephaly