Alabama begins screening newborns for two additional genetic disorders
Babies born in Alabama can now be screened for two more treatable disorders by the Alabama Department of Public Health.
Newborn blood screenings help alert health care providers and parents to the potential for conditions that may not be apparent at birth. Early treatment for some of these conditions means babies can grow up healthy.
The new disorders Alabama can screen for are:
- X-linked Adrenoleukodystrophy, a rare genetic disorder caused by a change in a single gene that affects males. X-ALD happens when certain fats cannot be broken down in the body. Fats build up and cause health problems including damage to the nervous system and adrenal glands. Possible treatments include supportive therapies, steroid treatment and stem cell transplants.
Adenosine Deaminase Deficiency for Severe Combined Immunodeficiency, an inherited disorder that damages the immune system. Individuals with ADA-SCID lack all immune protection from bacteria, viruses and fungi. It can be deadly in childhood because of severe recurrent infections. Gene therapy, bone marrow transplantation or enzyme replacement therapy may be effective if started early.
The Alabama Newborn Screening Program identifies 150 to 200 babies each year with a metabolic, endocrine, hematological or other congenital disorder.
You can learn more information about the newborn screening program right here.