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Spinal Muscular Atrophy
Event dates: 10th December 2017 – 10th December 2018
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a genetic condition that makes the muscles weaker and causes problems with movement.
Types of SMA:
There are several types of SMA, which start at different ages. Some types cause more serious problems than others.
The main types are:
* type 1 ? develops in babies less than six months old and is the most severe type
* type 2 ? appears in babies who are 7-18 months old and is less severe than type 1
* type 3 ? develops after 18 months of age and is the least severe type affecting children
* type 4 ? affects adults and usually only causes mild problems
Babies with type 1 rarely survive beyond the first few years of life. Most children with type 2 survive into adulthood and can live long, fulfilling lives. Types 3 and 4 don't usually affect life expectancy.
Treatments for SMA:
It's not currently possible to cure SMA, but research is ongoing to find possible new treatments.
Treatment and support is available to manage the symptoms and help people with SMA have the best possible quality of life.
Treatment may involve:
* exercises and equipment to help with movement and breathing
* feeding tubes and diet advice
* braces or surgery to treat problems with the spine or joints.
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