Sirenomelia, which is also known as mermaid syndrome, is an extremely rare congenital developmental disorder characterized by anomalies of the lower spine and the lower limbs.
It is an extremely rare but very serious condition that has occurred since birth. It is called mermaid syndrome because the legs of the baby are partially or completely fused.
Babies born with mermaid syndrome often have severe internal complications involving many organs in the body.
The exact cause of sirenomelia is unknown. Researchers believe that both environmental and genetic factors may play a role in the development of the disorder. Most cases appear to occur randomly for no apparent reason (sporadically), which suggests environmental factors or a new mutation
There is no treatment available for sirenomelia.
However, prevention is possible and should be the goal.
Because of the strong association of sirenomelia and maternal diabetes mellitus, there should be optimum maternal blood glucose levels in the pre-conceptual period and in the first trimester to prevent this anomaly. HERE
Patients with mermaid syndrome need special healthcare because of the severity of the condition and how it can affect various organs and tissues in the body. Surgery has proven effective in splitting the legs of certain individuals with this condition.