Down syndrome (sometimes called Down’s syndrome) is a condition in which a child is born with an extra copy of their 21st chromosome — hence its other name, trisomy 21. This causes physical and mental developmental delays and disabilities.
Many of the disabilities are lifelong, and they can also shorten life expectancy. However, people with Down syndrome can live healthy and fulfilling lives. Recent medical advances, as well as cultural and institutional support for people with Down syndrome and their families, provides many opportunities to help overcome the challenges of this condition.
What causes Down syndrome?
In all cases of reproduction, both parents pass their genes on to their children. These genes are carried in chromosomes. When the baby’s cells develop, each cell is supposed to receive 23 pairs of chromosomes, for 46 chromosomes total. Half of the chromosomes are from the mother, and half are from the father.
In children with Down syndrome, one of the chromosomes doesn’t separate properly. The baby ends up with three copies, or an extra partial copy, of chromosome 21, instead of two. This extra chromosome causes problems as the brain and physical features develop.
According to the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS), about 1 in 700 babies in the United States is born with Down syndrome. It’s the most common genetic disorder in the United States.
Approximately 1,000 Jordanians are currently living with Down syndrome, according to Ministry of Health statistics.
He explained that persons with Down syndrome can be productive if they are provided with appropriate training.
Down syndrome is a type of mental disability caused by extra genetic material in chromosome 21. This can be due to a process called nondisjunction, in which genetic materials fail to separate during a crucial part of the formation of gametes, resulting in an extra chromosome, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
The estimated incidence of Down syndrome is between one in 1,000 to one in 1,100 live births worldwide. Each year approximately 3,000 to 5,000 children are born with this chromosome disorder and it is believed there are about 250,000 families in the US who are affected by Down Syndrome, according to WHO figures.