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Alternative Names Return to topAnhidrotic ectodermal dysplasia
Definition Return to top
Ectodermal dysplasia is a group of conditions in which there is abnormal development of the skin, hair, nails, teeth, or sweat glands.
Causes Return to top
There are many different types of ectodermal dysplasia.
Many gene defects can cause ectodermal dysplasias. The most common form of ectodermal dysplasia usually affects men. Other forms of the disease affect men and women equally.
Symptoms Return to top
People with ectodermal dysplasia may not sweat or may have decreased sweating because of a lack of sweat glands.
Children with the disease may have difficulty controlling fevers. Mild illness can produce extremely high fevers, because the skin cannot sweat and control temperature properly.
Affected adults are unable to tolerate a warm environment and need special measures to keep a normal body temperature.
Other symptoms include:
Exams and Tests Return to top
Tests that may be done include:
Treatment Return to top
There is no specific treatment for this disorder.
Some things you can do include:
Outlook (Prognosis) Return to top
Having ectodermal dysplasia will not shorten your life span, but you must pay constant attention to temperature regulation and other problems associated with this condition.
Possible Complications Return to top
When to Contact a Medical Professional Return to top
Call for an appointment with your health care provider if your child shows symptoms of this disorder.
Prevention Return to top
If you have a family history of ectodermal dysplasia and you are planning to have children, genetic counseling is recommended. In many cases it is possible to diagnose ectodermal dysplasia while the baby is still in the womb.Update Date: 3/25/2008 Updated by: Michael Lehrer, M.D., Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.