Agenesis of the corpus callosum occurs when the corpus callosum, the band of white matter connecting the two hemispheres in the brain, fails to develop normally, typically during pregnancy. The development of the fibers that would otherwise form the corpus callosum become longitudinally oriented within each hemisphere and form structures called Probst bundles.
In addition to agenesis of the corpus callosum, other callosal disorders include hypogenesis (partial formation), dysgenesis (malformation) of the corpus callosum, and hypoplasia (underdevelopment) of the corpus callosum.
There are currently no specific medical treatments for callosal disorders, but individuals with ACC and other callosal disorders may benefit from a range of developmental therapies, educational support, and services. It is important to consult with a variety of medical, health, educational, and social work professionals. Such professionals include neurologists, neuropsychologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, speech and language pathologists, pediatricians, music therapists, geneticists, special educators, early childhood intervention specialists, and caregivers for adults.
Some children with agenesis of the corpus callosum have only mild learning difficulties. Intelligence in the child may be normal. Other children may have severe handicaps such as cerebral palsy, mental retardation, autism or seizure disorders. How one child falls on this spectrum depends somewhat on whether other brain development problems are detected on MRI and whether there is a problem with the child’s chromosomes.
Throughout childhood the nerve fibers of the corpus callosum continue to grow and become more efficient even through the teenage years. At that this phase in their development, children with a normally formed corpus callosum make progress in their abstract reasoning, problem solving, and their social skills mature. A child with agenesis of the corpus callosum may have kept up with his or her peers until this age; however, they may begin to fall behind in schoolwork and social functioning. Therefore, the symptoms of agenesis of the corpus callosum can become more evident as they grow into adolescence and young adulthood.
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