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Tuberous Sclerosis (TSC) Information

Tuberous sclerosis (meaning "hard swellings") is a rare genetic disorder primarily characterized by a triad of seizures, mental retardation, and skin lesions (called facial angiofibroma or adenoma sebaceum). This "classic" Vogt triad is present in 30-50% of cases; in particular, up to 30% of tuberous sclerosis reportedly have normal mentation. Tuberous sclerosis, along with Neurofibromatosis type I, Neurofibromatosis type II (a.k.a. MISME syndrome), Sturge-Weber, and Von Hippel-Lindau compromise the Phakomatoses or neurocutaneous syndromes, all of which have neurologic and dermatologic lesions. This grouping is an artifact of an earlier time in medicine, before the distinct genetic basis of each of these diseases was understood.

Individuals with tuberous sclerosis may experience none or all of the symptoms with varying degrees of severity. Tuberous sclerosis is a multi-system disease that can affect the brain, kidneys, heart, eyes, lungs, and other organs. Small benign tumors may grow on the face and eyes, as well as in the brain, kidneys, and other organs. Neuroimaging studies may be able to confirm the diagnosis. Seizures most often begin in the first year of life.

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