Article Text

  1. M. J.H. Willis1,
  2. L. M. Bird1,3,
  3. M. Dell'Aquilla1,2,
  4. M. C. Jones1,3
  1. 1Department of Pediatrics
  2. 2Department of Medicine, University of California, San Diego
  3. 3Children's Hospital San Diego


Mosaic trisomy 20 is one of the more common cytogenetic abnormalities found on amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling. Studies have shown that outcome is normal in 90-93% of prenatally diagnosed cases. There are, however, reports in the literature of children with mosaic trisomy 20 described as having an assortment of dysmorphic features and varying levels of developmental delay. Unfortunately, the literature has not defined a specific phenotype for this entity. Here we report three patients diagnosed prenatally with mosaic trisomy 20. Over a number of years of follow-up it has become apparent that there are some striking similarities among the three. Comparison between our patients and the literature cases suggests a more consistent phenotype than has previously been suggested. Recurring features include spinal abnormalities (including spinal stenosis, vertebral fusion, and kyphosis), hypotonia, lifelong constipation and possible colonic agangliosis, sloped shoulders, and significant learning disabilities despite normal intelligence. These findings may be overlooked on routine history and physical exam or assumed to be standard pediatric problems. It is not our intention to suggest that there is a distinctive face for this entity but to suggest that a subtle phenotype does exist. We have attempted to identify a set of findings for which any child diagnosed with mosaic trisomy 20 should be assessed or followed even in the presence of an apparently normal physical exam at birth.

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