This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Tracheal agenesis is a rare birth defect in which the trachea (windpipe) is completely absent (agenesis) or significantly underdeveloped (atresia). Signs and symptoms include polyhydramnios during pregnancy and respiratory distress, bluish skin color (cyanosis) and no audible cry shortly after birth. The underlying cause of tracheal agenesis is currently unknown. Approximately 90% of cases are associated with other anomalies, including those of the cardiovascular system, the gastrointestinal system and the genitourinary tract. Some cases may be part of a very rare condition known as VACTERL association. Surgery to repair the trachea may be attempted; however, the long-term outlook is generally poor in most cases.
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