Saturday, May 12, 2012

Friday's Facts 051112: Physical Characteristics

Most children with Down Syndrome (DS) share similar physical characteristics; The are traits common in Down Syndrome.  These occur in 80% of all cases.  Here are some of them:
  1. the eyes have an upward and outward slant
  2. there is a fold of skin on the inner side of the eye (epicanthal fold)
  3. the eye slit is narrow and short
  4. small, white patches can be seen on the edge of the iris
  5. the face has a flat appearance
  6. the head is smaller than average
  7. the soft spots on the head (fontanels) are larger than normal because the baby is growing more slowly
  8. the ears are smaller and lower-set
  9. the mouth is small and the lips are thin which leads to the tongue sticking out because the inside of the mouth is smaller
  10. the neck appears slightly short and loose folds of skin are seen at the back and sides (these go away as the baby grows)
  11. the legs and arms are short in relation to the body
  12. the hands are broad and flat with short fingers, the little finger slants inward, and there is a single crease across the palm
  13. the feet are broad with short toes and there is a larger space than normal between the big toe and the other toes
  14. there is poor muscle tone (hypotonia) and loose-jointedness (hyperflexibility)
  15. reflexes tend to be weaker and the cry is weak

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