- This is an accurate way of finding out whether the baby has a number of genetic or inherited disorders, such as Down's syndrome or cystic fibrosis.
- In Down's syndrome, an extra copy of chromosome number 21 is included when the sperm and the egg come together to form the embryo.
- For that reason society offers testing for Down's syndrome, haemophilia, cystic fibrosis, and a range of other genetic conditions.
Of relatively recent coinage, Down syndrome is the accepted term in modern use, and former terms such as mongol, Mongoloid, and mongolism, which are likely to cause offense, should be avoided. See also Mongoloid (usage).
1960s: named after John L. H. Down (1828–96), the English physician who first described it.
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