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"What is congenital adrenal hyperplasia?"
My child was born with congenital adrenal hyperplasia. What can I do to fix it? What complications could there be? I hadn't planned for this.
Congenital adrenal hyperplasia is a genetic condition in which one of several proteins in the body that are involved in producing substances involved in regulating salt and water balance and stress responses do not work properly. As a result, these substance usually need to be replaced with oral medications. Sometimes the condition can be inherited in a family whereas other times it can occur spontaneously for the first time in a new baby.
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Your child will need to be followed closely by a pediatric endocrinologist to help manage this condition. The severity of congenital adrenal hyperplasia varies widely from child to child, so this will in part determine which medications and what doses your child needs to take. This is a life-long condition, and there is no cure, but it can be controlled with medications. Children with congenital adrenal hyperplasia, depending on the form, can have problems related to their sexual organs, because the substances that are missing are also important for the development and maturation of sexual organs. They can also be very vulnerable in times of infection or other serious illness and require extra medications at these times. Your pediatric endocrinologist can help you with all of these issues.
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