There are many different types of congenital anomalies. Some are inherited, while others are a result of a genetic defect. A congenital disorder is any abnormality of the structure or function of the body at birth. Around five percent of all babies are born with a congenital disorder. The following are the major groups of congenital disorders. A list of these conditions can be found in Appendix C.
A family history of congenital anomalies is a risk factor for future pregnancies. The frequency of congenital anomalies among children from resource-constrained families is higher. Moreover, the higher the income level, the higher the chances of having a child with an abnormal chromosomal structure. In this context, having a child with neural tube defect is associated with a two-to-five-percent recurrence rate. Another risk factor is maternal age. The older the mother is when she is pregnant, the greater her risk of having a baby with an abnormal intrauterine fetal development. In addition, older mothers are also more likely to have a child with chromosomal anomalies, such as Down syndrome.
About half of all congenital anomalies are preventable, meaning the mother or father can prevent the development of the child. However, the majority of these problems are preventable. Parents should be as healthy as possible to reduce the risk of having a baby with a congenital anomaly. They should also consider new genetic diagnostic tests, which are becoming more prevalent. By making a healthy pregnancy, parents can significantly reduce the risk of birth defects.