Mental Retardation: Overview

Modified on 2009/10/14 21:39 by admin
Mental retardation is a disorder characterized by a significantly below average score on a test of mental ability and limitations in such areas as self-direction; school, work, and leisure activities; and daily-living, social, and communication skills.

The cause of mental retardation in most children is not known. However, some of the most common known causes include genetic factors, such as those that result in Down syndrome or fragile X syndrome, and environmental factors, such as drinking alcohol during pregnancy, which can cause fetal alcohol syndrome. Kernicterus, a condition which affects the brain and is caused by failure to properly diagnose and treat newborn jaundice, may also cause mental retardation. Fortunately, with the widespread use of vaccines, the number of children with mental retardation as a result of certain infectious diseases (such as rubella) has decreased.

During the 1995-1996 school year, about 600,000 U.S. 6- to 21-year-old children with mental retardation received special educational services at a cost of about $3.3 billion. If your child suffers from mental retardation due to a doctor's error, it may be important to contact an attorney who can help you protect your child's legal rights. Please keep in mind that there may be time limits within which you must commence suit.

See Also

  1. Children's Health Matters: Overview
  2. Ballou High School - Washington, D.C.
  3. Dursban / Baygon / Dragnet
  4. Georgetown, Texas
  5. Hills, Iowa
  6. Medical Malpractice & Negligent Care
  7. Mercury
  8. Olin Corporation Plant - McIntosh, Alabama
  9. Perchlorate
  10. Toluene
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