Fatal Diseases in Children


Even with advancements in medical technology and science, many diseases still have fatal outcomes, and are yet to be fully studied. Some of these diseases affect infants and young children. Diseases like Mitochondrial Encephalopathy, Glioblastoma multiforme, Cystic fibrosis or Alexander disease have no cure, and are all classified as fatal diseases.

Kinds of Children Fatal Diseases

Mitochondrial Encephalopathy is a condition caused by mutations in the genetic material (DNA) in the mitochondria. Patients with mitochondrial encephalopathy develop brain dysfunction, often accompanied with seizures and intense headaches. There is no known cure for this disease and physicians manage the patient's condition for this progressive and fatal condition. Some of the symptoms of this disease include abnormal cognitive development and stroke-like episodes. There is no specific data for the number of years a patient with this condition may live. The type of mitochondrial disease and drugs used for treatment determines how long the patient may live. Nevertheless, all individuals suffering from this condition will have a shortened life span.

Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)

This condition leads to rare brain cancer in children. Glioblastoma multiforme has no cure and generally leads to death of the affected individuals. This disease mostly affects children, but at times affects adults as well. Progress is being made in identifying and studying the gene which causes this disease. The gene has been identified and named “Mutated Multiple Advanced Cancers” with an acronym MMAC1. Only one person out of 20 of the patients of this disease survives for more than three years

Cystic fibrosis (CF)

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is another fatal disease in children. However, modern medicine has made dramatic advancement in understanding and diagnosing cystic fibrosis. New improvements in early detection, antibiotics therapy, as well as nutritional support and care have improved the life expectancy of the children suffering from this disease. It is likely that in the coming years a cure for cystic fibrosis could be found, but as yet, it is still classified as a fatal disease. Life expectancy for cystic fibrosis is between 35 and 37 years of age.

Alexander’s Disease

Alexander disease (ALX) is a rare fatal nervous system disorder which affects infants and children. It is a debilitating condition often accompanied by high fever and seizures. It has no cure and it is only question of time before it takes the life of a person afflicted with this disease. Some of the symptoms of Alexander disease include progressive mental impairment. The life expectancy for patients of this disease varies greatly.

Pediatric Leukodystrophies

Pediatric leukodystrophies is a very rare disease, Not much is yet understood about this condition which always leads to death. The disease affects young children. The brain of the afflicted child lacks myelin. This is a fatty coating that covers the cells of the brain and helps to insulate the brain much like an insulated electric wire. Without myelin, sluggish electric signals occur between neutrons. This deficiency causes multiple sclerosis. A child diagnosed with this condition may live for a year or less.

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