Anencephaly Definition : What Is Anencephaly?

What is anencephaly?

Anencephaly literally means "no brains". Children with this condition should have no brains. There is sometimes only a brain stem. There is also no part of the skull, so that the child does not have a head and the head is open. The child often has bulging eyes by the deformed skull and eye sockets. Children with anencephaly are stillborn or die shortly after birth.

Anencephaly occurs in the first weeks of pregnancy. Usually the cause is not clear. Possible heredity plays a role. In some families the condition because more often than others. It is also clear that the use of certain medications (eg, epilepsy) increases the risk of having a child with anencephaly.

It has long been known that the use of folic acid (a vitamin) before and during pregnancy correctly reduces the risk of having a child with anencephaly. Therefore any woman who wants to get pregnant are advised to take folic acid tablets; from four weeks before conception until the eighth week after conception (which is the tenth week of pregnancy). It does not hurt to use long time folate.

Anencephaly can be detected by amniocentesis or ultrasound at about twelve weeks of pregnancy.
Most women decide pregnancy a baby with anencephaly prematurely abort.

Anencephaly occurs in about 3 out of every 10,000 births.

 Children with this condition should have no brains Anencephaly Definition : What Is Anencephaly?

What causes anencephaly?

Anencephaly is a disorder associated with neural tube defects (NTD). After fertilization of the egg cells divide at breakneck speed and form a hollow tube together: the neural tube. This is done in the first three weeks of pregnancy. Then, this neural tube develops from the central nervous system (spinal cord and brains), and the skull.

Around the 24th day of the pregnancy, the neural tube closure located at the top and bottom. If something goes wrong at the close of the pipe is known as neural tube defects.

There are several different types of neural tube defects. The most common ones are spina bifida (open spine) and anencephaly. With spina bifida, the neural tube at the level of the spine is not closed properly. In anencephaly is the neural tube at the level of the brains remained open. This allows the skull, and scalp brains do not develop properly.

Anencephaly is hereditary?

In some families come neural tube defects such as anencephaly common. Then it is good to have genetic study in order to assess the risk of recurrence. Another possibility is a physical examination by the child after it is deceased. The research is clear whether there were other anomalies and whether the child may have had a particular syndrome. Or you may do chromosomal analysis.

Are there no other neural tube defects in your family? And there are no other anomalies found? Then the probability of a subsequent child with this neural tube defect 2%. In a clinical genetic center can tell you more about the recurrence risk (genetic counseling).

By folic acid tablets of 5 mg (high dose) to swallow before and during any subsequent pregnancy reduces the chance of a child with a neural tube defect by half.

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