First Time User? Sign Up Now
First Time User? Enroll now.
Home > Health Library > Canavan Disease
Canavan disease is an inherited disease that causes the progressive loss of the regions of the brain through which nerve impulses travel to other parts of the brain or to the spinal cord (white matter). Loss of white matter gives the brain a porous, degenerative appearance.
Babies with this disease appear normal after birth. Later they become floppy (hypotonic), are not able to control head movements, and by 5 to 8 months are developmentally delayed. Children with this disease usually have an enlarged head, intellectual disabilities, seizures, and feeding difficulties.
There is no treatment for Canavan disease. Support groups and counseling may be helpful for families of children with Canavan disease. Genetic testing is recommended to identify carriers of the disease and help guide decisions about having children.
Current as of:
May 30, 2018
Medical Review:Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Patrice Burgess, MD, FAAFP - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, MPH - Reproductive Genetics
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2018 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
1430 N Salem Street
Apex, NC 27502
2615 Lake Drive
Raleigh, NC 27607
901 Ridgefield Drive
Raleigh, NC 27609
4420 Lake Boone Trail
Raleigh, NC 27607
357 Carolina Arbors Drive
Durham, NC 27703
UNC REX Healthcare4420 Lake Boone TrailRaleigh, NC 27607, USA919-784-3100
Chosen for Excellence
Co-Worker & Physician Login
UNC Health Talk
Copyright 2019 UNC Health Care. All rights reserved.