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Eur J Paediatr Neurol. 2012 Nov;16(6):744-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ejpn.2012.03.001. Epub 2012 Apr 11.

Apneic crises: a clue for MECP2 testing in severe neonatal hypotonia-respiratory failure.

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  • 1Hospital Unit of Pediatrics, University Hospital OVE-Policlinico, Catania, Italy.


Males with methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) mutations may present with neonatal encephalopathy. We report on an infant with a MECP2 mutation who exhibited complex constellation of symptoms, including severe hypotonia, respiratory failure, and apneic episodes. In the neonatal period these symptoms are common to other disorders, including Ondine syndrome. Our observation confirms that the triad of severe hypotonia, apneic episodes, and respiratory failure may be caused by MECP2 mutations. Neonatologist and neuropediatricians must be alert to the presence of these symptoms to exclude this rare but severe disorder. Clinical suspicion and molecular confirmation of MECP2 mutation is of great importance for defining the diagnosis of this rare affection.

Copyright © 2012 European Paediatric Neurology Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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