What Exactly is Hirschprung’s Disease? – What Is Hirschsprung’s Disease is one of the questions that everyone, especially parents who are currently expecting their newborn, must ask to health care personnels and explore. Some may mistake the disease as constipation, when in fact the disease is not at all similar to constipation – it’s worse. Learning about what Hirschsprung’s Disease is and what causes this degenerative disease can help you better understand the condition and what to expect should your newborn turns out to have the disease.
So what is Hirschsprung’s Disease?
Hirschsprung’s Disease can be considered as a birth defect as the nerve cells in those who suffer from the condition are either underdeveloped or completely missing. In healthy newborns and children, the bowel or large intestines is equipped with an adequate amount of nerve cells which are scattered all over the rectum – these nerve cells are the ones that send signals to push along the stools and pass it through.
However, in newborns and children with Hirschsprung’s Disease, the aforementioned nerve cells are missing. They may be missing in some parts of their large intestines, or in the entire of their large intestines – in rare cases the nerve cells are not only missing in the large intestine, but also the small intestine.
When children and newborns are suffering from Hirschsprung’s Disease, the stools move normally until they reach where the nerve cells are missing – and then it either slows down or stops which then leads to intestinal obstruction.
What can possibly cause Hirschsprung’s Disease?
It is not yet known what are the causes of Hirschsprung’s Disease. However, due to is congenital nature, it is believed that the anomaly starts during the pregnancy. Most likely in the early trimester of pregnancy where the fetus is still developing in its mother’s womb – during this developmental stage, the nerve cells toward the end of the baby’s bowel stops growing for an unknown reason.
While researchers are still doing extensive studies to determine whether the lifestyle of expecting mothers during the pregnancy can increase the chance of their babies developing the Hirschsprung’s Disease, nothing can be said for sure what causes the condition as of now.
Who are at risk?
Hirschsprung’s Disease is either present at birth or congenital, if you or your spouse was diagnosed with the condition, or you have a child with it, you are twice more likely to have more children with Hirschsprung’s Disease. But after knowing What Is Hirschsprung’s Disease you’re at least know what to expect and what to do.