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Down Syndrome: Available Alternative Therapies

Wednesday, 05 Jan 2011 12:48 PM

What is Down syndrome?
Down syndrome, or Down's syndrome trisomy 21, or trisomy G, is a chromosomal disorder caused by the presence of all or part of an extra 21st chromosome. It is a condition in which extra genetic material causes delays in the way a child develops, both mentally and physically.
Down syndrome Treatment
Because it is a problem with the chromosomes, there are no cures for Down syndrome. Therefore, treatment for the condition focuses on controlling symptoms and any medical conditions that result from Down syndrome.
Treatment for Down syndrome can include:
Regular checkups and screening
Counseling and support
Medical Treatment for Down syndrome
There are treatments and therapies for the physical, medical, and cognitive problems associated with Down syndrome. The goal of medical treatment for Down syndrome is to manage the medical conditions associated with Down syndrome.
People with Down syndrome are at a higher risk for certain medical problems. Some of the problems commonly faced by people with Down syndrome include heart defects, thyroid, muscle, joint, and vision and hearing problems. Other conditions seen less frequently in Down syndrome include leukemia, and seizures. A variety of different approaches are used to treat these medical conditions.
Medications can be used to treat certain conditions that occur in people with Down syndrome. If a person with Down syndrome has a seizure disorder, they would benefit from taking anti-seizure medications. People with thyroid problems often take thyroid replacement hormones. While these medications help with their medical condition, they do not have any effect on Down syndrome. At this point in time, there is no medication that will cure Down syndrome.
Down syndrome Pregnancy Test
Amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling, (CVS) are tests that can be conducted to look for Down syndrome during the first half of pregnancy. Therefore, these tests are used only when there is a high chance of a genetic problem in the baby (such as for a mother 35 years of age or older). Non-invasive screening of pregnant women with ultrasound in the early stage of pregnancy, combined with maternal blood analysis, has reduced the number of children born with Down syndrome.
Available Alternative Therapies
Various traditional and alternative treatment methods for Down syndrome have been popular over the years including the use of pituitary extract, glutamic acid, thyroid hormone, 5-hydroxytryptophan, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), dihydroepiandosterone, sicca cell therapy, and growth hormones. More recently, the orthomolecular approach to treatment, using various combinations of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and amino acids has been revisited.
Some parents choose to include chiropractic care in the spectrum of interventions for children with Down syndrome. The scope of the chiropractic services offered to children includes musculoskeletal manipulations, recommendations for supplemental vitamins, and agents purported to improve immunologic function.

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