Development and Symptoms

Infants typically develop normally up to age 6-18 months. Physioneurological development tends to plateau after this brief period of normal development, and is followed by deterioration of high brain functions. Psychomotor and cognitive abilities rapidly decline within 1-2 years of age. Symptoms that develop are autistic-like, with mental retardation and poor growth. It is, hence, easy for the misdiagnosis of Rett for autism, or cerebral palsy.

Autistic-like Symptoms in Rett Syndrome:
* screaming fits
* panic-like attacks
* inconsolable crying
* avoids looking into other people's eyes
* lack of social/emotional reciprocity
* general lack of interest
* marked impairment of use of nonverbal behaviors to regulate social interaction
* delay of linguistic development
- loss of speech

SYmptoms in Rett Present in Cerebral Palsy:
* short stature
* severe dementia
* mild learning disability
* hypotonia
* Delayed or absent ability to walk
* gait/movement difficulties
* ataxia
* microencephalopathy - abnormally small head, lack of head growth
* some forms of spasticity
- wringing of hands
- Chorea - spasmodic movements of hand or facial muscles -dystonia
- bruxism - grinding of teeth

Symptoms that can stablizie before complications arise:
* epilepsy/seizure
* spastic paraparesis - spasticity or paralysis of the lower limbs