CausesBy Mayo Clinic staff
Rett syndrome is a genetic disorder, but in only a few cases is it inherited. Instead, the genetic mutation that causes the disease occurs randomly and spontaneously.
Rett syndrome in boys
Because males have a different chromosome combination from females, boys who have the genetic mutation that causes Rett syndrome are affected in devastating ways. Most of them die before birth or in early infancy.
A very small number of boys have a less destructive form of Rett syndrome. Similar to girls with Rett syndrome, these boys will likely live to adulthood, but they're still at risk of a number of health and behavior problems.
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