This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Progeria leads to extreme premature aging and affects many different body systems. The symptoms begin within a year of life with poor growth and weight gain. Children with progeria have a characteristic facial appearance with a large head, small mouth and chin, narrow nose and large eyes. Other symptoms include baldness, loss of fat under the skin, and dental and joint abnormalities. They also often have symptoms typically seen in much older people including joint stiffness, hip dislocations and severe, progressive heart disease. Intelligence is typically normal. Most people with progeria die in their teens from a heart attack or stroke. Progeria is caused by a genetic variant in the LMNA gene. This variant usually arises as a new change in the genetic material and is not inherited from a parent. Diagnosis is based on the symptoms, clinical exam, and may be confirmed by the results of genetic testing. Treatment is focused on managing the symptoms. A new treatment is available that may help people with progeria live longer.
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