Marfan Syndrome.

Essay by BritnyHigh School, 10th grade September 2005

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What are symptoms of Marfan syndrome?

-Excessive height

-Long arms and legs with long slender fingers and toes

-Nearsightedness (myopia)

-Indented or protruding breast bone

-Curvature of the spine (scoliosis)

-Mild to severe heart problems


Individuals who have Marfan syndrome are more than likely, unusually tall and slender; with rather long arms, legs, and fingers in relationship to the rest of their body. Being tall is not a severe medical concern, but may create social problems for children and adolescents, because they are taller than the majority of other children their age. Parents must be prepared to help children handle being teased or singled out because of their height. In addition, they are taller than children their own age, they appear older and expected be to their selves more maturely.

Eye problems.

Children with Marfan syndrome are recommended to have regular eye exams starting at a young age.

Nearsightedness (myopia) is a widespread condition. It can be fixed with prescription glasses or contact lenses. Countless amounts of children experience difficulties with the lens of the eye (the focusing structure positioned just at the back of the pupil of the eye and held in place by ligaments). The lens can become ripped from its supports and become "dislocated." This can cause vision troubles that are mild or severe enough to hinder with development in school. In odd cases, the lens may need to be removed surgically.

On rare occasions, a child may suffer a detachment of the retina (the light sensitive tissue located at the back of the eye). This causes a sudden loss of vision and requires emergency surgery. Because of this tendency to develop eye problems, it is necessary for children to have regular eye exams with an optometrist (eye specialist) to detect and treat these...