The origins of strange superstitions and fears gradually fade away as medicine and scientific possibilities converge. The majority of birth defects are very sad for all of us who have a relative or have witnessed one. The causes of such cases can now be identified to a large extent, making treatment easier and more feasible than it was in the past when such cases were thought to be due to metaphysical causes or a divine curse.
An incomplete or damaged brain and/or skull as a result of teratogenic disorders that appear after the fourth month of pregnancy is known as anencephaly. The anencephalic infant is physically uncomfortable and has an odd shape. The baby’s half-formed head frequently draws comparisons to aliens or monkeys, which outrages the general public. The majority of the skull samples from anencephalic people have been presented as proof of extraterrestrial life or other strange creatures in publications from extremist societies and on numerous social media platforms. A baby with anencephalis is born with an incomplete and open head, lacking a portion of the skull and a portion of the brain. The baby also lacks the cerebrum, which is where the forebrain and thinking-coordination part of the brain develop. The skull bone may not completely enclose the rest of the brain. Babies with anencephaly pass away soon after birth. Some infants can live for another two to three years while receiving intensive life support. Many families organize aid campaigns for this because doing so necessitates paying for the baby’s expensive and burdensome care.
It is one of the neural tube defects brought on by teratogens that occur at crucial points in the development of the baby and is classified as an anencephaly disorder. In a matter of about two months following sperm and egg fertilization, the baby’s nervous system has largely developed. In the fourth week, the embryo completes the neural tube. The spinal cord, the brain, and the body’s primary nervous system are all protected by the neural tube. The following factors could prevent the neural tube from forming normally at this stage. Because it manifests at birth, this condition is frequently referred to as a congenital anomaly.
Other than anencephaly, the following congenital anomalies can also arise from a neural tube defect:
-Craniorachischisis: This condition results in the exposure of the brain and spinal nerves due to a malformation of the skull and spinal cord bones.
– Spina bifida: This condition is brought on by closure mistakes along the spine.
-Encephalocele: The brain and meninges protrude through the skull’s openings.
-Inencephaly: This condition manifests as a twisted head and severe spinal cord defects. Rarely do they pass away shortly after birth.
What causes anencephaly?
The question of what causes anencephaly is not fully understood. The following are the principal arguments advanced by subject-matter experts:
Anencephaly is 20 times more likely to occur in subsequent pregnancies for women who experienced it in a prior pregnancy.
-Diabetes mellitus that is insulin-dependent in the mother or her own family
– Those who use convulsive drug therapy
-Overweight women who have been given an obesity diagnosis
– Pregnant women who are overexposed to heat during the first few weeks of pregnancy, when health is most at risk.
– Teratogens of metabolism.
– Pregnant women with nutritional deficiencies of folic acid, vitamin B12, vitamin B6, zinc, and selenium
– Genetic idiopathic causes.
– Adverse environmental circumstances
Unfortunately, our nation has a higher prevalence of this illness than the global average, which affects 1 in 4859 babies. The main causes of this are inadequate methods of birth control and a lack of knowledge about folic acid use. Folic acid consumption is claimed to reduce the risk of anencephaly by 70%.
Anencephaly: How Is It Diagnosed?
If no medical tests are carried out during the baby’s normal developmental course, anencephaly cannot be diagnosed. As a result, it is frequently found at birth. Thanks to some tests and techniques, and the ever-improving medical facilities, it is now possible to detect anencephaly with amniocentesis and alpha-fetoprotein tests during the ultrasound examination to be performed in the third or fourth months of pregnancy. Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for anencephaly once it has developed. Anencephaly is not protected by the ban on abortion, even in nations where it is prohibited.