Dwarfism, also commonly known as short stature, is caused by genetic or medical conditions. It is a state where the adult height of the person suffering is 4 feet 10 inches or even less. Based on a study, the average height maybe around 4 feet. The interesting point to note here is dwarfism is not a disease, and hence there is no single medical definition about it. Thus, different organizations have different meanings that vary according to various criteria.
Causes of dwarfism
There is no specific cause for dwarfism but over 200 types of reasons that can lead to dwarfism. However, a generalized statement can say that mostly it occurs due to the genetic problems arising in a person. But, specific dwarfism causes are still unknown to medical science.
The most common dwarfism is skeletal dysplasias, which is a genetic disorder. It is nothing but an abnormal growth of bone. It includes:
- Achondroplasia: This is responsible for being the cause for 70% cases. It is usually present in the arms and legs of an individual. When a gene metamorphoses with the usual copy of another gene, it is found that the person might suffer from dwarfism and is likely to be carried out in coming generations.
- Spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia congenital (SED): This is relatively less observed, mainly for 1 in 95000 babies. Here it may occur that the arms and legs may not grow as expected, and thus some of the body parts may show irregular growth for a brief period.
- Diastrophic dysplasia: Again, a rare kind of dwarfism is usually observed to affect the spine and can even change the thumb size of the person.
These are not the only causes of dwarfism, some other factors may also be responsible, and conditions vary with the patient.
- Organ failure will cause the inability of the human body to produce hormones.
- Insufficient levels of certain hormones
- Malnourishment or lack of specific food vitamins or minerals that may also cause such issues in the patients.
Types of dwarfism
There are broadly two types of dwarfism which includes
- Disproportionate dwarfism: The irregular formation of body parts is common in this case. Some organs are of very small size while some have the size of an average body organ.
- Proportionate dwarfism: Here, the body parts are in smaller proportion, and together they will altogether look like any average-sized body.
Diagnosis of dwarfism
The detection of dwarfism can well be diagnosed before birth if either of the parents is suffering from dwarfism. Several tests are useful to know if the fetus has a chance of being at any risk. If the fetus is showing no imbalance, the no measures can be taken before the child is born. X-rays and physical exams are conducted to check the growth of the baby. Certain times it may occur that blood tests, organ health check-up, or a complete medical check-up may be evident to reveal the cause and diagnose the problem in an individual.
Signs and Symptoms
The signs and symptoms may vary concerning the type of dwarfism a person is experiencing, whether disproportionate or proportionate and the symptoms observed under each of them is as follows:-
- Disproportionate dwarfism
– Average sized trunk
– Large head, a prominent forehead, and a flattened nose
– Adult height of about feet
-Limited functionality of the elbow
-Slower growth rate
– No or delaying sexual development in adolescence.
– Height generally below the third percentile of an average person.
While the problem is genetic, a complete solution may not be available under several cases, but there are ways in which may alter the functioning of the organs or the body. If not increasing the stature, treatments can, however, relieve the sufferer which may not lead to cause them further complications.
Surgical treatments: Here, the surgery can help the bones to go again in the right direction, or stabilizing the spine to reduce pressure occurring on the spinal cord.
Hormone therapy: When the growth of a child is abnormal, injections are given to them, almost daily for several years until they reach a certain height. The treatment may, however, continue for adulthood to ensure that the person is receiving proper muscle or fat in their body.
Limb Lengthening: This is another surgery that is opted by several people, but it is quite a controversial treatment. The decision lies on the patient to hold on to the pain caused to them.
Health care: Regular check-ups with the doctor can help them improve their condition to ensure that the doctor keeps a check on the symptoms and takes necessary measures to avoid
Precautions and options for the patient
The active participation of doctors does play an important role, but there are specific precautionary measures taken by the patients to reduce the pain. Taking steps for self-care will not only keep them actively involved and conscience about their health but also can reduce the complications to a certain level.
- Car seats: Firm and back support causing chairs can give relief to people
- Adequate head and neck support: Children usually need this when they are sitting, hold their heads or neck which might be comfortable to them
- Complications monitoring: Keeping a note on the difficulties that the person is facing like an ear infection or sleep issue, and reacting to it instantly and with the presence of mind
- Healthy diet and posture: A properly balanced diet and a stance that is right for the rear part of the body. One must keep a track of food symptoms using a diary.
All these remedies collectively will help the person. It is an even better way to have an application remember everything for one and keep on notifying for the changes, schedules, and medications. Treatment Tracker will have it all in the profile and will monitor the health of individuals with high accuracy. As a result, people will be just a simple step away from a personalized doctor, that will be present at all times to guide them throughout the day.