Dear Mr. & Mrs. Borwers, Hello, I am Natalia Akhlaghi, a genetic counselor here at pH Genetic Counselling. As you may know a couple days ago you went in for an ultrasound and your ultrasound technician found that your child has  low set ears. This is a sign of Trisomy 18. The technician sent me the photo so my Trisomy 18 specialist here, at Ph Genetic Counselling, could analyze this finding. First, let us tell you about Trisomy 18. Trisomy 18, also known as Edwards Syndrome, is a severe genetic disorder that has no treatment and is usually fatal.  Your child does have Trisomy 18, and Trisomy 18 is  totally random and affects 1 in 1,500 live, born, infants. If your child makes it past term the likelihood of survival is small, 10 percent or more may survive to their first year. If you’re child lives past one year she could have episodes of no breathing, groin hernia, and kidney defects, these could be fatal, or cause even more troubles. Before I go on, I just want to remind you that it is neither you or you’re partner’s fault. Remember, we inherit one chromosome from our mother and one chromosome from our father. Half from mom and half from dad. Trisomy 18 occurs when either the sperm or egg cell gives two of the eighteenth chromosome, causing three of the eighteenth chromosome, instead of the normal two that we have.   There are many wonderful stories of babies and children who are living with Trisomy 18, and some stories of children who did not. You can read some of these stories at www.trisomy18.com. Our specialist recommend that you publicize this news as it is easier to annonce while the baby is still  alive, so you’re grieving time, if you do have one, is your inner family and friends only. From other families, I have heard that it helps to make it public as you can hear others stories and find a support group. The chance of any other future children getting this disorder is slim to none, about a 1% chance. So any other kids you may have should not get Trisomy 18. The quality of life for you and your child will be stressful, it will not be easy but, it will be worth it. You will have doctor appointment, after appointment to make sure your child is doing ok. If your have any questions please email me, and or check out this website that supports parents with kids diagnosed with Trisomy 18:  trisomy18.comTake care,  Natalia Akhlaghi

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