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Pyloric Stenosis Has Strong Familial Aggregation

Study of Danish children also finds heritability of condition is 87 percent

TUESDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- Pyloric stenosis, which is the most common condition requiring surgery in an infant's first months of life, has strong familial aggregation and high heritability, according to a study in the June 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

In a population-based cohort study, Camilla Krogh, M.D., of the Statens Serum Institut in Copenhagen, Denmark, and colleagues evaluated 1,999,738 children born in Denmark between 1977 and 2008 and followed up for the first year of life to investigate familial aggregation of pyloric stenosis from monozygotic twins to fourth-generation relatives, and to estimate heritability. During the study, 3,362 children underwent surgery for pyloric stenosis.

The researchers found that the rate ratio of pyloric stenosis was highest for monozygotic twins (182), followed by dizygotic twins (29.4), siblings (18.5), half-siblings (4.99), cousins (3.06), and half-cousins (1.60). However, the researchers found no difference in rate ratios for maternal and paternal relatives of children with pyloric stenosis. They found no difference according to gender of the cohort member or relative and no difference in rate ratios for maternal and paternal relatives of children with the condition. In addition, the heritability of pyloric stenosis was 87 percent.

"With a heritability estimate of 87 percent, it seems that familial aggregation is primarily explained by shared genes that may affect responses to postnatal factors," the authors write. "The high rates for twins and siblings should be considered in counseling families with affected children."

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