Fetal hydantoin syndrome


What is Fetal Hydantoin Syndrome?

Fetal hydantoin syndrome is a pattern of mental and physical birth defects caused when a mother takes phenytoin, a drug given to control seizures or epilepsy, during pregnancy. Phenytoin is also called Dilantin. The features of fetal hydantoin syndrome can vary greatly from person to person, and not every fetus exposed to phenytoin will have features associated with fetal hydantoin syndrome. The characteristics associated with fetal hydantoin syndrome include distinct facial features, such as low-set ears, widely-spaced eyes, short nose, short neck, and a fold over the inside corner of the eye (called an epicanthal fold). The ears and fingers may look abnormal and there may be small fingernails.

Babies with fetal hydantoin syndrome may be small at birth and may continue to grow more slowly than other unaffected children. Children diagnosed with fetal hydantoin syndrome may also have intellectual disabilities later in life.



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