Family history may play a role in the development of ambiguous genitalia, because many disorders of sex development result from genetic abnormalities that can be inherited. Possible risk factors for ambiguous genitalia include a family history of:
- Unexplained deaths in early infancy
- Infertility, absent menstrual periods or excess facial hair in females
- Genital abnormalities
- Abnormal physical development during puberty
- Congenital adrenal hyperplasia
If your family has a history of these risk factors, consider seeking medical advice before trying to conceive. You may also benefit from genetic counseling.
Mar. 16, 2012
- Ambiguous genitalia. American Urological Association Foundation. http://www.urologyhealth.org/urology/index.cfm?article=90. Accessed Feb. 14, 2012.
- Tanagho EA, et al. Smith's General Urology. 17th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2008. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=21. Accessed Feb. 16, 2012.
- Murphy C, et al. Ambiguous genitalia in the newborn: An overview and teaching tool. Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology. 2011;24:236.
- Barbaro M, et al. Disorders of sex development. Seminars in Fetal and Neonatal Medicine. 2011;16:119.
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