What are the causes of Hypotonia?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Jan 14, 2013

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Quick Bites

  • Problems in Nervous system or muscular system may trigger it.
  • It can also occur from an injury, illness or an inherited disorder.
  • It affects the muscles strength, motor nerves, and the brain.
  • Treatment depends upon the condition of the affected child

A new born who has hyptonia may appear limp at birth and may be unable to bend his/her knees. Hypotinia is a condition which can be detected right after the birth or during infancy. The child would also struggle with feeding and motor skills. It affects the muscles strength, motor nerves, and the brain which is why it can be easily noticed however but dignosing the disease which is causing hyptonia is not that easy.

hypotonia in new born

Causes of Hypotonia

Hypotonia is usually triggered by problems which are related to nervous system or muscular system. It can also occur from an injury, illness or an inherited disorder.  Benign congenital hypotonia occurs when infants are born with hypotonia. Children with benign congential hypotonia have minor developments delays.

Signs and symptoms

Depending upon the underlying cause, the signs of hyptonia include:

  • Poor or no control over the head
  • Delay in development of gross motor skills
  • Delay in fine motor skills development
  • decreased muscle tone
  • Decreased strength
  • poor Reflexes
  • hyper flexibility
  • weakened posture

Treatment for hypotonia

The condition that affects brain and causes hyptonia include:

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • brain damage
  • muscular dystrophy

Genetic conditions that can lead to hypotonia include:

  • Down syndrome
  • Pradar-Willi Syndrome
  • Tay-Sachs disease
  • Trisomy 13



Treatment depends upon the condition of the affected child.  Specific treatment for hypotonia depend upon the age of the child, medical history, the extent of the condition, cause of the cause, child’s ability , tolareance for certain medications, therapies.  However, no treatment is required for benign congenital hypotonia.


Image Courtesy : Getty

Read more article on Hypotonia Causes and Risks

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