Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Understanding Lissencephaly: A Smooth Brain Disorder

Most people have not heard about this cephalic disorder, but Lissencephaly, translation "smooth brain", is a condition in which the brain does not develop and form normally. Medically speaking, "gyri" or brain folds as well as "sulci" or grooves are both lacking due to certain neuronal migration activity that occurs within the 12th week up to the 24th week of gestation.

The physical appearance of the brain is going to be different, hence the nickname for this medical condition. A delay in development is going to accompany this condition, but the severity of this delay varies widely and is attributed to the severity of deformation of the brain as well as severity of seizures in relation to the condition of the brain.

Life expectancy for individuals suffering from smooth brain disorder can be hindered for a variety of reasons, chiefly respiratory issues over time. A similar brain disorder, polymicrogyria, can sometimes be confused with lissencephaly, so there are a conjunction of symptoms that radiologists look for in order to make sure the diagnosis is correct.

Cerebral abnormalities can also of course be detected by more in depth ultrasounds prior to birth. Of course this has to be in conjunction with other examinations post birth. The ultrasound before birth can detect these abnormalities as early as week 20. Before this week, the brain looks smooth anyway so it would be impossible to tell.

In recent years, more insight has been developed concerning this disease thanks to genetic studies as well as neuroimaging. There are actually a total of 20 different types of this condition that make up the entire smooth brain disorder. Continued research searches for other causes as well as treatment options. There is a possibility that children continue to develop normally and function normally all through life, but many of them also suffer from severe mental retardation and end up stopping development at about the five month level.

This means that many children are left unable to walk or even move around much and of course not able to speak. However, with the advancements that have been made, life expectancy has increased in general and children are able to see further development in many cases. Treatment for each individual does differ due to the types of symptoms so this will be discussed with the doctor and communicated to you. As more is discovered about smooth brain disorder, prognosis will likely continue to get better as it has done in recent years.

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