Many medical conditions that people suffer from are clear and concise. It affects one area of their body, and that’s it. However, in some cases, a disease or disorder can affect many different body systems. These types of disease can seemingly be very difficult to understand and grow to recognize. Alström syndrome is one such condition.
Alström syndrome is a rare genetic condition. It tends to begin during infancy and comes on gradually instead of all at once. People who suffer from Alström syndrome will find that’s not the only condition they suffer from. Right along with it is many problems like severe obesity, type 2 diabetes and weakened heart muscles. Considering the potential issues, it’s good to learn more about Alström syndrome so you can recognize the signs.
Alström syndrome is a condition which is inherited from parents. Specifically, it comes from the ALMS1 gene. This gene is responsible for creating a protein that is often found in low levels of many different tissues throughout the body. This can help explain why so many different parts of the body can be affected by Alström syndrome.
Both parents need to pass on the gene. If only one of the parents has it, then children have the potential to be a carrier and pass the gene on to future parents. This is a very rare disease with only around 1000 cases diagnosed in the world, so this gene mutation is not incredibly common.
As mentioned, the symptoms list for Alström syndrome can be extensive. In fact, the list here won’t even include all of the symptoms. This list will include many of the most common and some of the more serious symptoms that can be dealt with. Symptoms include:
Some of the other potential issues include asthma, photophobia, pulmonary arterial hypertension, respiratory insufficiency, alopecia, cirrhosis, depression, hyperthyroidism, obsessive-compulsive behavior, portal hypertension, precocious puberty, renal insufficiency, seizures and so many more!
More than almost any disease and syndrome in existence, treatment is an individual affair for each person. This is due to the many different symptoms and conditions that may be occurring due to the existence of Alström syndrome. Treatment will likely be a cumulative effort. A team of specialists will likely be required to create the best possible treatment plan. It’s likely that lifestyle changes like diet and exercise will be required. Special glasses or hearing aids can be necessary. Medications can be important, while others use hormone therapy.
The prognosis for Alström syndrome can be very different depending on the way it affects an individual. Early diagnosis and treatment will lead to appropriate management of symptoms. This can vastly increase the quality of life and life expectancy!