About Down Syndrome
Timeline – A History of Down Syndrome
In 1866, English physician John Langdon Down linked physical characteristics of people with Down syndrome to decreased intellectual ability. Today, we know that Down syndrome is set of mental and physical symptoms that result from having an extra copy of Chromosome 21.
The Story of Two Syndromes
A commentary by Michelle Sie Whitten, Executive Director, Global Down Syndrome Foundation
Before the 1980s, the overwhelming majority of people with Down syndrome in the United States were placed in institutions, often times as infants or young children. Today, the average lifespan of someone with Down syndrome is 60 years old. By and large, people with Down syndrome now live at home and participate in our communities.
Misconceptions vs. Reality
There are many misconceptions about people with Down syndrome. The Global Down Syndrome Foundation is dedicated to correcting misconceptions and over time providing funding for research that will better address medical and cognitive issues associated with the condition.
We are pleased to announce Global Down Syndrome Foundation and National Down Syndrome Congress will jointly create and distribute a “Down Syndrome Prenatal Testing Pamphlet” that will inform pregnant women through their OBGYNs, genetic counselors and/or through prenatal testing companies.
Find an organization near you that supports people in your community. Also learn more about nationally-oriented Down syndrome organizations.