A 9-month-old boy with pre- and post-natal growth retardation, microcephaly, plagiocephaly, and several minor anomalies had the initial karyotype: 46,XY,der(1)t(1;?) (p36.1;?). Further analysis showed that the der(1) was derived from an unfavorable segregation of a maternal complex chromosome rearrangement, i.e., 46,XX,der(1)t(1;?) (p36.1;?), der(4)t(4;?)(q?;?). Whole chromosome fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and chromosome microdissection were used to clarify the maternal karyotype as: 46,XX,der(1)t(1;4)(4qter-->4q33::1p36.13-->1qter),der( 4)t(1;4)inv(4)(4pter-->4q31.3::1p36.33-->1p36.13::4q33 -->4q31.3::1p36.33-->1pter). Therefore, the karyotype of the boy actually was 46,XY,der(1)t(1;4) (p36.13;q33). Clinical comparison of the patient's clinical findings showed similarities to individuals with partial del(1p) and dup(4q). To our knowledge the above cytogenetic abnormalities have not been described previously. This case further demonstrates the advantages of chromosome microdissection and FISH in the identification of anomalous chromosome regions and breakpoints.