Microcephaly is a condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than expected. During pregnancy, a baby’s head grows because the baby’s brain grows. Microcephaly can occur because a baby’s brain has not developed properly during pregnancy or has stopped growing after birth, which results in a smaller head size.
Can babies have small heads normal?
Microcephaly is a condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than normal. It is most often present at birth (congenital). Most children with microcephaly also have a small brain and intellectual disability. Some children with small heads have normal intelligence.
When should I be concerned about my baby’s head size?
Macrocephaly means big head, and it is the name for a condition in which an infant or child has an abnormally large head size. For a doctor to diagnose macrocephaly, the measurement of the head around its widest part needs to be larger than the 98th percentile.
Should I be worried if baby has small head?
Chances are your doctor will detect microcephaly at the baby’s birth or at a regular well-baby checkup. However, if you think your baby’s head is smaller than normal or isn’t growing as it should, talk to your doctor.
What disease causes small heads in newborns?
Microcephaly & Other Birth Defects
Microcephaly is a birth defect in which a baby’s head is smaller than expected when compared to babies of the same sex and age. Babies with microcephaly often have smaller brains that might not have developed properly. Zika virus infection during pregnancy is a cause of microcephaly.
What if head circumference is small?
Microcephaly is a medical condition in which the circumference of the head is smaller than normal because the brain has not developed properly or has stopped growing. Microcephaly can be present at birth or it may develop in the first few years of life.
What does baby head size indicate?
Another measure of infant growth is head circumference, or the size of your baby’s head. It’s important because it can indicate how well their brain is growing. If your baby’s brain isn’t growing properly, they may have a condition known as microcephaly.
What is abnormal head circumference?
Macrocephaly refers to an overly large head. It’s often a symptom of complications or conditions in the brain. There’s a standard used to define macrocephaly: The circumference of a person’s head is more than two standard deviations above average for their age. Or, their head is larger than the 98th percentile.
Will my baby’s head round out on its own?
In most cases, your baby’s head shape will resolve on its own. Given time and a little effort, your baby’s head will grow and return to normal as they begin moving and doing more. Wearing a helmet is also a good way to correct large malformation or flat spots on your baby’s head.
What is a normal size baby head?
The average newborn’s head circumference measures about 13 3⁄4 inches (35 cm), growing to about 15 inches (38 cm) by one month. Because boys tend to be slightly larger than girls, their heads are larger, though the average difference is less than 1⁄2 inch (1 cm).
Are small babies healthy?
Babies who are smaller, but otherwise appear normal, do not have any major health risks. The main concern is the fact that once they are born, their size can impair their ability to maintain their body heat, especially in the first few days after birth.
How do I know if my baby has microcephaly?
After birth, a baby with microcephaly may have these signs and symptoms: Small head size. Failure to thrive (slow weight gain and growth) High-pitched crying.
Does baby head size determine intelligence?
Preliminary studies have suggested links between brain size, head size, and IQ, but head circumference isn’t directly correlated with intellect. Among the many things that expectant parents hope for in a newborn is, a big head — maybe not so much at birth, but shortly thereafter.
What happened to the babies born with small heads?
A microcephalic baby has a head, and usually a brain, that’s smaller than average. This can create structural brain problems that cause a combination of other conditions that range from mild to severe, depending on the degree of the disorder, including: Seizures and, potentially, epilepsy.
At what age is microcephaly diagnosed?
Early diagnosis of microcephaly can sometimes be made by fetal ultrasound. Ultrasounds have the best diagnosis possibility if they are made at the end of the second trimester, around 28 weeks, or in the third trimester of pregnancy. Often diagnosis is made at birth or at a later stage.
Do premature babies have smaller heads?
Very Preterm (VP) and Very Low Birth Weight (VLBW) infants have smaller heads at birth, and therefore smaller brains, but measuring their head growth helps monitor risks to their brain growth and future IQ.