Children with progeria usually develop severe hardening of the arteries. This is a condition in which the walls of their arteries — blood vessels that carry nutrients and oxygen from the heart to the rest of the body — stiffen and thicken, often restricting blood flow.

Most children with progeria die of complications related to atherosclerosis, including:

  • Problems with blood vessels that supply the heart (cardiovascular problems), resulting in heart attack and congestive heart failure
  • Problems with blood vessels that supply the brain (cerebrovascular problems), resulting in stroke

Other health problems frequently associated with aging — such as arthritis, nearsightedness and increased cancer risk — do not develop as part of the course of progeria.

May 03, 2014