Batten Disease: A Rare, Dangerous Genetic Disorder

If your child suffers from seizures or vision problems, you should investigate the possibilities of Batten disease.

A rare inherited disorder of the nervous system which usually manifests in childhood, early signs usually appear between 5 to 10 years of age.

In some cases, early signs are very subtle and take the form of personality and behavior changes, slow learning and also ineptness in kids.

Over time, affected children may suffer with mental impairment, progressive loss of sight and motor skills, worsening seizures. Gradually they can become completely disabled and eventually die.

However, it is very rare and it is estimated that almost 4 of every 100,000 births are diagnosed with this form of genetic disorder. It is neither contagious nor preventable.

Is there any way to save child from Batten disease?

So far, no specific treatment that can stop or reverse the symptoms of Batten disease has been identified. However, seizures can be reduced and they can be controlled with anticonvulsant drugs. Physical and occupational therapy can help your kid to maintain function as long as possible.

If your kid is really suffering with this specific genetic disorder, give him plenty of Vitamin C and E and with low contents of Vitamin A. A well-balanced diet including these specific vitamins can help in slowing the disease. There is no treatment to prevent fatalities resulting from the disease, but you can help your child to live a quality life.

It is a hard truth to accept, but support and encouragement from family and friends is essential for helping the patient cope with this profound disability.

Who is at increased risk?

Because it is an inherited condition, people with abnormal gene areas are at increased risk. If you have any family history of Batten disease, your kids have a higher risk of developing this genetic disorder. Children of parents with Batten disease are also at increased risk of developing the disorder.

Have regular health check-ups and follow a good nutritious diet every day to improve the quality of life. If you know that you have a family history of this rare disorder, talk to an experienced genetic counselor before you decide to have children.