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Each year three thousand to five thousand people are diagnosed with Down Syndrome in the United States It is found in approximately one out of one thousand all live births Nadel37 Down Syndrome occurs when there is an abnormality in chromosome 21 Most people with Down Syndrome approximately ninety-five percent has an extra 21 chromosome Instead of the normal number of forty-six chromosomes in each cell the individual with Down Syndrome has forty-seven chromosomes This condition is called trisomy 21Pueschel6 Down Syndrome is a combination of birth defects including some degree of physical abnormalities musculoskeletal disorders and Granted individuals with Down Syndrome have distinct physical characteristics Generally they are more similar to the average person in the community than they are different The physical features are important to the physician in making the clinical diagnosis Not every child with Down Syndrome has all the characteristics some may only have a few and others may show most of the signs of Down Syndrome Some of the physical features in children with Down Syndrome include flattening of the back of the head slanting of the eyelids small skin folds at the inner corner of the eyes depressed nasal bridge slightly smaller ears small mouth decreased muscle tone loose ligaments and small hands and feet About fifty percent of all children have one line across the palm and there is often a gap between the first and second toes Pueschel240 The physical features observed in children with Down Syndrome usuallydo not cause any disability in the childMoreover there are many health problems associated with Down Syndrome Sixty to eighty percent of children with Down Syndrome have hearing deficits Pueschel235 If there is a significant hearing loss the child should be seen by an ear nose and throat specialist Forty to forty-five percent of children with Down Syndrome have congenital heart disease Marino63 Many of these children will have to undergo Intestinal abnormalities also occur at a higher frequency
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