What are leukodystrophies?

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Leukodystrophies are among rare diseases, which have a serious effect on brain cells. These diseases harm myelin sheath which is a material that provides protection to the nerve cells and surrounds them. Harm to myelin sheath blocks all messages between body and the brain. Leukodystrophy can cause problems with movement, speaking, vision, hearing, physical and mental development.

Leukodystrophies are mostly genetic and appear during childhood. The leukodystrophy symptoms are rarely diagnosed in early stages because infants look healthy in early stages. The symptoms of leukodystrophy appear with time and gets worse.

No specific cure for leukodystrophy is available. The symptoms can be cured with physical therapy, speech therapy and medicines. Some leukodystrophies are suggested to be treated with bone marrow transplants.  Leukodystrophies affect the growth of white matter i.e. myelin.

Gene mutation may cause leukodystrophy thus these are inherited disorders and transferred from parents to child. The inheritance is in the form of dominant, recessive and X-linked.

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