Monday, May 17, 2010

Local boy fights Williams Syndrome - Arkadelphia, AR - Arkadelphia Siftings Herald

Local boy fights Williams Syndrome - Arkadelphia, AR

Twelve-year-old Kyle Knaak of Arkadelphia is just like every other kid his age. A fifth-grader at Peake Elementary School, he enjoys fishing, bowling, going to the mall and having a field day at an amusement park. He loves eating Happy Meals from McDonald’s, and is infatuated with trains.
Unlike other children, Kyle has not attended school since October.
But not by his choice.
At 9 months old he was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder known as Williams Syndrome, which is caused by a deletion of a section of genes from chromosome 7.
His body cannot produce elastin, the tissue essential for organ growth. It affects Kyle’s brain, eyes, heart, kidneys, intestines and tendons — though any artery in his circulatory can be affected.
The disorder has affected his blood pressure. His mother, Holly, says it is typical for Kyle to have a blood pressure high enough to admit an average adult to a hospital’s intensive care unit. He is currently on four different medications to keep his blood pressure in check.

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