Is Rett Syndrome A Mental Illness?

Is Rett syndrome a form of autism?

It is categorized as an autism spectrum disorder, but, unlike most forms of autism, Rett syndrome has a clear-cut cause—a mutation in a protein known as MeCP2..

Does Rett syndrome affect intelligence?

One in 10,000 females suffers from Rett Syndrome, leaving them aware and alert but often without the ability to express themselves in any way. Without the ability to communicate through speech or hand movement, Rett Syndrome patients have not been able to demonstrate their intellectual abilities.

Can Rett syndrome be detected before birth?

Prenatal diagnosis for Rett syndrome involves DNA testing to find out whether the developing fetus has a mutation in the MECP2, CDKL5, and FOXG1 genes. Rett syndrome mostly occurs as a result of a de-novo mutation, meaning that the defect is not inherited from the parents but appears spontaneously.

What is the difference between Rett syndrome and autism?

Movement problems in people with Rett syndrome tend to be much more severe than those in autistic people. People with autism may have poor coordination or an awkward gait. But many girls with Rett syndrome are unable to walk, and as they get older they may develop rigidity or tremors.

What type of genetic disorder is Rett syndrome?

Rett syndrome is caused by mutations on the X chromosome on a gene called MECP2. There are more than 900 different mutations found on the MECP2 gene. Most of these mutations are found in eight different “hot spots.” Rett syndrome is not a degenerative disorder with individuals living to middle age or beyond.

Can people with Rett syndrome have kids?

In at least 95% of Rett syndrome cases, the cause is a de novo mutation in the child. That is, it is not inherited from either parent. The parents’ MeCP2 genes are normal. Rett syndrome patients are fertile but unlikely to have children.

Is Rett syndrome progressive?

Rett syndrome is a progressive neurodevelopmental disorder that almost exclusively affects females. Only in rare cases are males affected.

How does Rett syndrome affect a person’s life?

Rett syndrome is a severe condition of the nervous system. It is almost only seen in females, and affects all body movement. Rett syndrome may cause speech problems (such as inability to learn to speak, or loss of speech), difficulty walking or loss of the ability to walk, and loss of purposeful hand use.

How is Rett syndrome diagnosed?

Rett syndrome is diagnosed by a physical exam and detailed information about the child’s development and medical history. Key features of a Rett syndrome diagnosis include loss of normal hand use, loss of spoken language, trouble walking, and abnormal hand movements such as hand wringing or clapping.

How does Rett syndrome affect the brain?

Rett syndrome is a rare genetic neurological and developmental disorder that affects the way the brain develops, causing a progressive loss of motor skills and speech. This disorder primarily affects girls.

How old is the oldest person with Rett syndrome?

Coenraads said girls with Rett syndrome typically live to adulthood and middle age, and the oldest person she knew of who had Rett died at 77.

What is the life expectancy of a girl with Rett syndrome?

Life expectancies are not well studied, although survival at least until the mid-20s is likely. The average life expectancy for girls may be mid-40s. Death is often related to seizure, aspiration pneumonia, malnutrition, and accidents.

How is Rett syndrome passed from parent to offspring?

In nearly all cases, the genetic change that causes Rett syndrome is spontaneous, meaning it happens randomly. Such random mutations are usually not inherited or passed from one generation to the next. However, in a very small percentage of families, Rett mutations are inherited and passed on by female carriers.

What is the life expectancy of a person with Rett syndrome?

While it is known that Rett syndrome shortens lifespan, not much is known about specific life expectancy rates for people with Rett syndrome. It generally depends on the age when symptoms first begin and their severity. On average, most individuals with the condition survive into their 40s or 50s.

Is there a cure coming soon for Rett syndrome?

Although there is no cure for Rett syndrome, treatments are directed toward symptoms and providing support, which may improve the potential for movement, communication and social participation. The need for treatment and support doesn’t end as children become older — it’s usually necessary throughout life.