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Neurofibromatosis (NF) is a genetic condition that affects children into their adulthood. As an incurable disease, it can cause tumors to develop in the nervous system. Most children will show common symptoms of the brownish-colored spots on their skin and freckles under the armpits. You should also recognize other symptoms of NF whether your child is diagnosed with NF1 or NF2.
Other Symptoms For NF1
Seizures can affect children diagnosed with NF1. They may also experience speech impairment, high blood pressure, scoliosis, and a delay of puberty.
Other Symptoms For NF2
Unsteadiness is another symptom of NF2. You should also keep an eye out if you child has facial pain, headaches, or experience weakness in the body.
Every year, children become diagnosed with a form of neurological genetic disorder that can cause tumors on nerves, the spinal cord, in the brain, and under skin. This disorder, known as Neurofibromatosis, is often diagnosed in newborn children who are born with brownish-colored spots on the skin.
While these spots look like birthmarks, if your child has six or more that are larger than a dime, your doctor may make an early diagnosis of Neurofibromatosis, or NF. Early detection of tumors is the best way to prevent nerve and organ damage in your child.
Set up Yearly MRI and Ophthamology Appointments
By setting up yearly appointments, the doctors can determine if any tumors are developing in the brain or on nerves in the eye. If tumors are detected, treatment can begin early to remove the tumors.
Feel for Unusual Lumps Under Skin
Keep an eye out for lumps appearing under your child's skin, or if your child has a hard time moving arms or legs. This could indicate tumors growing under the skin. If you suspect a tumor, contact your pediatrician immediately.
More common in older children, hearing loss can affect younger children as well. Children experience hearing loss when tumors develop on acoustic nerves. If your child tugs at his ears, complains about ringing noises, or seems to not hear you when you speak his name, seek medical help immediately.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|