This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Congenital tracheomalacia is when an infant is born with weak cartilage around the windpipe (trachea) that makes it difficult to keep the airway open. The trachea can collapse when breathing out. Symptoms vary from
mild to severe and may include noisy breathing (stridor), shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, and bluish skin (cyanotic spells). Symptoms typically worsen during periods of activity. Tracheomalacia can occur on its own or along with other airway problems. It can also occur with congenital abnormalities that affect other parts of the body. Tracheomalacia often resolves on its own by the second year of life. Treatment of symptoms may include humidified air, chest physical therapy, or continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) for respiratory distress. Severe tracheomalacia may need to be treated with surgery.
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