Has my baby got microcephaly?

Last Update: April 20, 2022

This is a question our experts keep getting from time to time. Now, we have got the complete detailed explanation and answer for everyone, who is interested!

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After birth, a baby with microcephaly may have these signs and symptoms: Small head size. Failure to thrive (slow weight gain and growth) High-pitched crying.

How do you check for microcephaly?

To diagnose microcephaly after birth, a healthcare provider will measure the distance around a newborn baby's head, also called the head circumference, during a physical exam. The provider then compares this measurement to population standards by sex and age.

At what age is microcephaly diagnosed?

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.

Can a baby grow out of microcephaly?

Microcephaly is a lifelong condition that has no cure. Treatment focuses on preventing or reducing problems and maximizing a child's abilities. Children born with microcephaly need to see their healthcare team often. They will need tests to track the growth of the head.

Do babies with microcephaly smile?

Marques said that head control, the ability to lift and support the head without help, in babies with microcephaly was “quite rare.” Having a social smile and eye contact is less rare, he said, depending on the type of visual damage and on whether they receive enough visual stimulation to strengthen their ability to ...

WHO: Microcephaly and Zika virus infection - Questions and answers (Q&A)

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Can a child with microcephaly look 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.

How long can a child live with 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.

When should I be concerned about microcephaly?

When to see a doctor

Chances are your doctor will detect microcephaly at the baby's birth or at a regular well-baby checkup. However, if you think your baby's head is smaller than normal or isn't growing as it should, talk to your doctor.

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 ...

Is microcephaly related to autism?

Microcephaly was significantly associated with the presence of medical disorders. Results support those from recent studies suggesting a raised rate of macrocephaly in autism which, pooling published data, can be estimated to be 20%.

How common is acquired microcephaly?

What is microcephaly? Microcephaly is a condition in which a baby's head is smaller than average for an infant's size and age. The baby is either born with a smaller head (congenital), or the condition develops as the baby gets older (acquired). Microcephaly is rare, occurring in 2-12 babies per 10,000 births.

Can you tell microcephaly from ultrasound?

Microcephaly may be diagnosed during pregnancy with ultrasound. Microcephaly is most easily diagnosed by ultrasound late in the second trimester or early in the third trimester of pregnancy.

Is microcephaly hereditary?

In some cases, microcephaly may be caused by inheriting an abnormal gene. Microcephaly is an autosomal recessive gene disorder. Autosomal means that boys and girls are equally affected. Recessive means that two copies of the gene, one from each parent, are needed to have the condition.

How do you know if your child has microcephaly?

After birth, a baby with microcephaly may have these signs and symptoms: Small head size. Failure to thrive (slow weight gain and growth) High-pitched crying.

Does Macrocephaly go away?

Macrocephaly Due to Hydrocephalus

Doctors call it "benign extra-axial collections of infancy" or "benign external hydrocephalus." Children typically outgrow the condition by early childhood.

How can you prevent microcephaly?

While you're pregnant, you can take steps to try to prevent acquired microcephaly:
  1. Eat a healthy diet and take prenatal vitamins.
  2. Don't drink alcohol or do drugs.
  3. Stay away from chemicals.
  4. Wash your hands often, and get treated for any illness as soon as you feel sick.
  5. Have someone else change the litter box.

Does microcephaly run in families?

Microcephaly is either caused by exposure to harmful substances during the fetal development, or it may be associated with genetic problems or syndromes that may have a tendency to run in families.

What percentile is considered microcephaly?

Microcephaly is usually defined as head circumference two standard deviations or more below the mean or less than the 2nd percentile for age and sex. Severe microcephaly is defined as head circumference 3 standard deviations or more below the mean for age and sex.

What is considered severe microcephaly?

Severe microcephaly is defined as head circumference more than 3 SDs below the mean for age and sex [4], [5], [6], [7]. Congenital microcephaly may occur as an isolated structural birth defect or in combination with other birth defects.

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.

How do you deal with microcephaly?

Treatment focuses on ways to manage your child's condition. Early childhood intervention programs that include speech, physical and occupational therapy may help your child strengthen abilities. Your doctor might recommend medication for certain complications of microcephaly, such as seizures or hyperactivity.

Who is the oldest person with microcephaly?

Paul, Minnesota, have three daughters, the oldest and youngest of whom have microcephaly. They were advised to abort when DuCharme was 16 weeks pregnant with their third daughter – doctors detected that the fetus had a smaller-than-average head and said they saw a hole in the brain.

What is the IQ of someone with microcephaly?

The DQ/IQ values of children with acquired microcephaly were generally below average, with approximately one half being in the lower part of the normal range (ie, 70–100) and the rest being <70.

What is the cause of true primary microcephaly?

Microcephaly means small head and brain. This may result from chromosomal and genetic abnormalities, fetal hypoxia, congenital infection and exposure to radiation or other teratogens, such as maternal anticoagulation with warfarin.

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.