Moebius syndrome: causes, symptoms and treatments

Moebius syndrome, also known as Möbius syndromeThis is a rare neurological disorder whose symptoms already appear in newborns. It is a condition that affects the movement and control of various muscles in the face and also causes other major problems in other parts of the body.

Below, we will see what is known about the causes of Moebius syndrome, what are its main symptoms and what types of treatments are recommended to treat patients with this neurological pathology.

    What is Moebius Syndrome?

    It is known as Moebius syndrome a congenital neurological disease considered very rare for the rarity of known cases of patients with symptoms meeting diagnostic criteria.

    The main effect of this pathology is the absence or underdevelopment of nerves related to certain facial muscles, which usually results in full or partial facial paralysis and, in some cases, deformities in various parts of the body.

      Symptoms of Moebius syndrome

      As we have seen, the main symptoms of this pathology are related to poor control of facial muscles, Although they are not the only manifestations of the disease. This is a more detailed explanation of the signs of the pathology:

      1. Problems trying to move facial muscles

      The deterioration of the cranial nerves, in particular the VI and VII, makes it impossible to properly control the movement of the eyelids and that the repertoire of facial expressions is limited. The face appears to have been “frozen”.

      2. Hypotonia

      Motor nerves problems that many muscles break down when not in use.

      3. Eye coordination errors

      To function well, the eyes need a high degree of coordination in the work of the small facial muscles, so that small defects in these movements are very noticeable in this part of the body. Outraged, damage to the VI cranial nerve can produce strabismus.

      4. Difficulty coordinating lips and tongue

      Another typical symptom of Moebius syndrome, which also often causes dysarthria (difficulty in pronunciation and speaking in general.

      5. Deformities of the feet

      Many people with Moebius syndrome they place their feet incorrectly when walking, Orient the plants inwards, which ends up generating malformations.

      6. Socialization problems

      This consequence arises from the difficulties of movement of the muscles of the face, which has a great impact on social life by not using normal facial expressions.

      7. Swallowing changes

      Swallow the rib, due to tongue movement problems. Drowning and coughing are common.

      8. Dry mouth and oral diseases

      When you don’t close your mouth tightly, it dries up and germs proliferate. This, for example, can lead to infections, deformities or cavities and other dental and gum problems.

      9. Respiratory problems

      Malformations of the jaw and the inability to properly close the mouth lead to complications when breathing, especially during sleep.

      Causes of this pathology

      We know that Moebius syndrome particularly affects cranial nerves VI and VII, Although they can also damage other cranial pairs coming out of the brainstem. However, the exact biological mechanism that produces this degradation is not known (in part because it is a rare condition).

      However, there are some theories about what could be going on in the health of patients with this neurological disorder.

      For example, although the heritability of this syndrome is low, which means that it usually occurs in babies of parents who do not have symptoms or with parents who express them, the REV3L and PLXND genes could be involved.

      It has also been argued that Moebius syndrome could be caused by problems during intrauterine development associated with environmental or genetic alterations, such as stopping the blood supply to the embryo’s brain.


      There is currently no known intervention method that guarantees a definitive cure for Moebius syndrome with a good margin of probability. Thus, the treatments used with patients with this pathology do not aim to cure, but to alleviate the negative impact of symptoms and support for socialization and employment.

      In this sense, interdisciplinary work is necessary between different health professionals, such as neuropsychologists, neurologists, speech therapists, pediatricians and clinical and health psychologists, among others. In psychotherapy, you can work through cognitive behavioral therapy to change limiting beliefs and improve patients’ self-esteem, as well as to train them in social skills, which, along with the work of speech-language pathologists, will help to break down the problem. isolation that these people often suffer from. .

      Surgery can also be used to correct any deformities that may occur, although always trying correct bad postural habits so that they do not reappear in the future.

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