Macrocephaly is the term because that an unusually large head. One infant v macrocephaly will have actually a larger head than many other babies of the same age and also sex.

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In plenty of cases, this condition is benign or harmless. In various other cases, that may indicate an underlying clinical condition, such as a genetic syndrome or a mind tumor.

In this article, learn about the reasons of macrocephaly and how medical professionals diagnose and treat the potential underlying clinical conditions.


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Share ~ above PinterestA son with one unusually huge head may have macrocephaly.
Macrocephaly means huge head, and it is the name for a condition in i m sorry an child or child has actually an abnormally huge head size.

For a physician to diagnose macrocephaly, the measure of the head approximately its widest component needs to be bigger than the 98th percentile.

Macrocephaly might sometimes be a authorize of an underlying problem that needs treatment.

In other cases, it may occur because of genetics, including a family history of macrocephaly. If this is the case, the problem will be harmless.


Genes are responsible for many situations of macrocephaly. When an infant v a huge head has actually a family background of larger-than-average head sizes, physicians will diagnose them v benign familial macrocephaly.

Infants through benign familial macrocephaly will certainly not experience any type of symptoms other than a large head and also will have actually no extr health concerns.

However, there are number of potential reasons of macrocephaly the require medical attention, one of which is a fluid buildup top top the brain. Extra liquid can put pressure on the brain, raising the threat of numerous health complications.

The severity the the condition depends on the lot of fluid present. As soon as there is a far-ranging fluid buildup in the brain, i m sorry is referred to as hydrocephalus, the underlying cause is most likely to require treatment come prevent more problems.

Other causes of macrocephaly include:

bleeding in the brainbrain tumorscertain metabolic conditionssome types of infectionAlexander diseaseGreig cephalopolysyndactyly syndromeSotos syndromechronic hematomas and also other lesionsother hereditary syndromes

The major sign the macrocephaly is an unusually big head. In situations of light familial macrocephaly, this will certainly be the only symptom.

If an infant has actually an underlying problem that is causing the macrocephaly, they will present with added symptoms. These might include:

delays reaching developmental milestonesa fast-growing headmental disorders

A doctor will frequently continue to monitor the infant after the diagnosis. The physician will additionally ask parents or caregivers come watch because that the following signs:

excessive sleepinessunusual eye movementpoor feedingvomitinga bulging soft spotexcessive irritability

Doctors deserve to usually diagnose macrocephaly throughout a regimen physical examination.

As part of a physical examination because that a baby or young child, the physician will measure the head circumference. Castle will execute this at each checkup, and any time over there is a concern. If the physician notes a rapid rise in head size over time, this can lead come a diagnosis.

If a doctor thinks that an infant has actually macrocephaly, lock will frequently order imaging tests, such together a CT scan, ultrasound, or MRI.

These tests will aid the physician to determine if over there is a fluid buildup in the brain, i m sorry could cause pressure and also other complications.

Some symptoms of enhanced pressure on the brain include:

increased irritabilityvomiting

If a boy with macrocephaly has added symptoms, this may assist the physician to diagnose other health conditions. Various other symptoms might include:

vision problemsbulging veinsa bulging soft clues on the height of the head

The treatment for macrocephaly will certainly vary depending on the basic cause. An infant with benign familial macrocephaly will not typically require any type of treatment.

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Infants whose macrocephaly stems indigenous a genetic problem may require life-long treatment and support, including:

occupational therapybehavioral therapyspeech and language therapy

An infant who has a liquid buildup or bleeding in the mind will frequently require prompt surgery to mitigate the pressure and prevent further complications.