What is progeria?
Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome, more commonly known as progeria, is a genetic condition characterised by dramatic, rapid appearance of signs of ageing beginning in childhood. By 12 months, symptoms such as slow growth and hair loss begin to appear. Patients also find it hard to gain weight.
Affected children develop a typical facial appearance including prominent eyes, thin nose and lips, a small chin and protruding ears. Joint abnormalities are also common.
Progeria does not disrupt intellectual development of the child or the development of motor skills such as standing and walking.
It isn’t hereditary. Experts say it’s due to a rare gene change, which happens purely by chance.
Children who suffer from progeria are genetically susceptible to premature progressive heart disease such as hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis) and nearly all progeria patients die from heart conditions. They also often suffer from symptoms typically seen in much older people such as stiffness of joints.
The life expectancy for a child with progeria is about 13, but some with the condition die younger and some live 20 years or longer.
In extremely rare cases, more than one child in the same family may have the condition. There’s no cure for progeria.
Source: medical websites