Fetal hydantoin syndrome

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What percentage of babies exposed to phenytoin end up having Fetal Hydantoin?

The risk of a child having Fetal Hydantoin after being exposed is between 5 and 10%. The risk of birth defects for women taking phenytoin is about 2-3 times that of the general population.

References
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/
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If phenytoin can cause fetal hydantoin syndrome for my baby, then why do I have to continue taking it while I am pregnant?

Is there anything I can do as a mother to reduce the chance of my baby having Fetal Hydantoin?

How can I know if my child with Fetal Hydantoin will have intellectual disability?

If I have epilepsy and take Dilantin, is the chance of my child developing epilepsy later in life?

Why do some people exposed to phenytoin develop Fetal Hydantoin while others do not?

Is there anything else that can be done to help the development of a child with Fetal Hydantoin?

Can I breastfeed while taking phenytoin?

If phenytoin can cause fetal hydantoin syndrome for my baby, then why do I have to continue taking it while I am pregnant?

Pregnant women should not change seizure medications during pregnancy without the advice of a healthcare provider. Having a seizure while pregnant may be harmful to the baby, and could pose a larger risk to the baby than taking the medication does.

Complications for your baby depend on many things, such as the type of seizure, how long the seizure lasts, and the number of seizures that happen. Epileptic seizures can cause periods of time when the baby is not getting enough oxygen. Not having enough oxygen could lead to brain damage and problems with development. A seizure could also cause a mother to fall or have an accident that could injure herself or her baby. These seizures could be life-threatening for both mother and baby.

References
  • http://mothertobaby.org/fact-sheets/valproic-acid-pregnancy/
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/
Is there anything I can do as a mother to reduce the chance of my baby having Fetal Hydantoin?

It is recommended that pregnant women taking phenytoin also take extra folic acid. Having enough folic acid will lessen the chances that the baby will show some symptoms of Fetal Hydantoin.

References
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/
How can I know if my child with Fetal Hydantoin will have intellectual disability?

Unfortunately, sources disagree on the likelihood of someone with this disorder having cognitive disability. Some studies show borderline or slightly reduced intellectual ability. Some studies suggest that children with Fetal Hydantoin are more likely to have learning disabilities, especially with verbal skills. Because of this, it's hard to predict the degree of intellectual disability in a child with Fetal Hydantoin Syndrome.

References
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/
If I have epilepsy and take Dilantin, is the chance of my child developing epilepsy later in life?

Most children of people with epilepsy do not develop seizures or epilepsy; however, it is possible. The chance for a person to develop epilepsy if there mother or father has the condition, is less than 5%.

References
  • http://www.epilepsy.com/learn/epilepsy-101/epilepsy-inherited
Why do some people exposed to phenytoin develop Fetal Hydantoin while others do not?

Scientists and doctors are not sure why this happens. It could be that genetic factors contribute or that other factors that the baby is exposed to affect the outcome. For example, a baby with less folic acid may be more likely to develop Fetal Hydantoin.

References
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/
Is there anything else that can be done to help the development of a child with Fetal Hydantoin?

Children with Fetal Hydantoin can benefit from occupational, physical, and speech therapy. Early intervention can improve outcomes for these children.

References
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/
Can I breastfeed while taking phenytoin?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, it is okay to breastfeed while taking phenytoin. Be sure to check with you doctor to be sure that your does of phenytoin will not affect the baby if you breastfeed.

References
  • https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/fetal-hydantoin-syndrome/

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