This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Waardenburg syndrome type 2 (WS2) is a type of Waardenburg syndrome characterized by varying degrees of deafness and pigmentation (coloring) abnormalities of the eyes, hair and/or skin. WS2 differs from type 1 and some other types of WS by the absence of dystopia canthorum (lateral displacement of the inner canthi of the eyes). Sensorineural hearing loss occurs in the majority of people with WS2, and heterochromia iridis (differences in eye coloring) occurs in about half. Progressive hearing loss has also been reported in some people with WS2.
WS2 may be caused by changes (mutations) in any of several genes, but in many cases the genetic cause is unknown. While inheritance is usually autosomal dominant, sometimes WS2 is not inherited, occurring for the first time in someone with no family history of the condition. Treatment may include the use of hearing aids and/or cosmetic products or treatments (if desired) for skin hypopigmentation.
Waardenburg syndrome type 2 can be further divided into subtypes based on the genetic cause, when the responsible gene can be identified.
For more information, visit GARD.