Ontario to screen babies for ‘bubble-boy disease,’ curable if treated early

Manitoba will offer screening for hearing for all newborns. Getty Images / File

TORONTO – Ontario hospitals will begin screening newborns for “bubble-boy disease,” an often fatal immune deficiency which can cured if identified early in a child’s life.

The province will become the first in Canada to screen infants for Severe Combined Immune Deficiency Syndrome, which is known by the acronyn SCID.

The ministry of health estimates 10 children a year will be saved in Ontario because of the new screening program.

Children with SCID have highly compromised immune systems and cannot fight off infections.

They often experience a series of severe bacterial, viral and fungal infections and frequently that can lead to death.

The condition becomes the 29th inherited and-or treated disease for which babies born in Ontario are screened.

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