Autosomal Dominant Robinow Syndrome

In: GeneReviews® [Internet]. Seattle (WA): University of Washington, Seattle; 1993.
[updated ].


Clinical characteristics: Autosomal dominant Robinow syndrome (ADRS) is characterized by skeletal findings (short stature, mesomelic limb shortening predominantly of the upper limbs, and brachydactyly), genital abnormalities (in males: micropenis / webbed penis, hypoplastic scrotum, cryptorchidism; in females: hypoplastic clitoris and labia majora), dysmorphic facial features (widely spaced and prominent eyes, frontal bossing, anteverted nares, midface retrusion), dental abnormalities (including malocclusion, crowding, hypodontia, late eruption of permanent teeth), bilobed tongue, and occasional prenatal macrocephaly that persists postnatally. Less common findings include renal anomalies, radial head dislocation, vertebral abnormalities such as hemivertebrae and scoliosis, nail dysplasia, cardiac defects, cleft lip/palate, and (rarely) cognitive delay. When present, cardiac defects are a major cause of morbidity and mortality.

A variant of Robinow syndrome, associated with osteosclerosis and caused by a heterozygous pathogenic variant in DVL1, is characterized by normal stature, persistent macrocephaly, increased bone mineral density with skull osteosclerosis, and hearing loss, in addition to the typical features described above.

Diagnosis/testing: The diagnosis of autosomal dominant Robinow syndrome is established in a proband with typical suggestive findings and/or by the identification of a heterozygous pathogenic variant in DVL1, DVL3, or WNT5A through molecular genetic testing.

Management: Treatment of manifestations: Corrective surgeries as needed for cryptorchidism, abnormal penile insertion / penoscrotal position, and cleft lip/palate. Hormone therapy may be helpful for males with micropenis. Orthodontic treatment is typically required.

Surveillance: Measurement of head circumference regularly in infancy and throughout childhood. Developmental assessment every three months in infancy and every six months to one year thereafter, or more frequently as needed if cognitive delays are identified. Dental evaluation every six to 12 months or as recommended. Periodic hearing assessments in childhood. Regular cardiac and renal assessment as needed by respective specialists if abnormalities are identified.

Evaluation of relatives at risk: Evaluation of the sibs of a proband in order to identify as early as possible those who would benefit from institution of treatment and surveillance.

Pregnancy management: Pregnancy in affected women appears to be generally uncomplicated. For an affected fetus, cesarean section may be required for abnormal presentation and/or cephalopelvic disproportion.

Genetic counseling: ADRS is inherited in an autosomal dominant manner. A proband may have the disorder as a result of either an inherited or de novo pathogenic variant. Each child of an individual with ADRS has a 50% chance of inheriting the pathogenic variant; however, the severity of the clinical manifestations cannot be predicted from the results of molecular genetic testing. Prenatal testing for a pregnancy at increased risk is possible if the DVL1, DVL3, or WNT5A pathogenic variant has been identified in an affected family member.

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