Marfan syndrome is a congenital disorder. It is an inherited disorder that most people, who have this disorder, do not realize or notice the condition, until they grow adult. However of course, the features of this syndrome may appear at any stage of life.
The disorder affects the connective tissues in the body, especially the skeleton, the blood vessels, the fibres that anchor and support the organs inside the body and also the eyes and the heart. Marfan syndrome can be life-threatening, if your aorta, the large blood vessel that carries blood from your heart to the rest of your body is affected.
To make sure that the condition is diagnosed at an early stage and the complications caused by the disorder are prevented, it is important that you identify the condition as early as possible. Therefore, you need to know about the signs and symptoms of Marfan syndrome.
Signs That Suggest a Person May Have Marfan Syndrome?
The signs and symptoms of Marfan syndrome vary widely from person to person. The signs that would suggest that a person may have Marfan syndrome are –
- Disproportionately long limbs – arms, legs and even fingers
- Flexible joints
- Abnormally tall
- Slender structure or build
- Flat feet
- Crowded teeth
- Abnormally curved spine
- Sinking chest
- Severely near-sighted
- Murmuring heart
- Stretch marks on the skin, without any weight gain or weight loss
- Eye problems like early glaucoma, dislocated lens, early cataracts, detached retina.
Marfan syndrome can also affect the aorta or the large blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body. However, the difficult part is that there are no signs and symptoms that can indicate that the aorta has been affected by this syndrome. What is even worse is, if the aorta is affected, it can be a life-threatening condition, if the aorta is ruptured by being enlarged. So, the symptoms that you should be looking for are –
Diagnosing Marfan syndrome is the most difficult part as the symptoms are similar to many other diseases and disorders. Therefore, having a close eye and reporting to the doctor in regular intervals is very useful.
What is the Prognosis and Life Expectancy for Marfan Syndrome?
As already mentioned, diagnosing Marfan syndrome is very difficult in an early stage. This makes it difficult to start the treatment. Though there is no cure for this condition, but with advanced medical support, many of the symptoms can be managed and prevented from worsening. With an early treatment, medicines and surgical support, most of the Marfan syndrome patients can live as long as a healthy human being.
However, what is indeed bad news about this disorder is that it can affect any part of the body or the connective tissue at any point of age. Even if the patient has not had eye problems by the age of 50 or the aorta is not affected till middle age, there is no guarantee that they won’t take place in the old age.