Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Eye Health Center

Font Size

Cat Eye Syndrome

It is possible that the main title of the report Cat Eye Syndrome is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.


  • CES
  • Schmid-Fraccaro Syndrome
  • Chromosome 22, Partial Tetrasomy (22pter-22q11)
  • Chromosome 22, Partial Trisomy (22pter-22q11)
  • Chromosome 22, Inverted Duplication (22pter-22q11)

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Cat eye syndrome is a rare chromosomal disorder that may be evident at birth. Individuals with a normal chromosomal make-up have two 22nd chromosomes, both of which have a short arm, known as 22p, and a long arm, called 22q. However, in individuals with cat eye syndrome, the short arm and a small region of the long arm of chromosome 22 (i.e., 22pter-22q11) are present three or four times (trisomy or tetrasomy) rather than twice in cells of the body.

The name "cat eye syndrome" is derived from a distinctive eye (ocular) abnormality that is present in some affected individuals. This feature consists of partial absence of ocular tissue (coloboma), often affecting both eyes (bilateral). Affected ocular tissues may include the colored region (iris), the middle layer (choroid), and/or the nerve-rich innermost membrane (retina) of the eye.

Associated symptoms and findings may vary greatly in range and severity, including among affected members of the same family. While some may have few or mild manifestations that may remain unrecognized, others may have the full spectrum of malformations. However, in many cases, characteristic features of the disorder include mild growth delays before birth; mild mental deficiency; and malformations of the skull and facial (craniofacial) region, the heart, the kidneys, and/or the anal region.

More specifically, individuals with cat eye syndrome frequently have coloboma(s), downslanting eyelid folds (palpebral fissures), widely spaced eyes (ocular hypertelorism), and/or other ocular defects; misshapen ears with abnormal outgrowths of skin and small depressions in front of the outer ears (preauricular tags and pits), and/or absence (atresia) of the anal canal, with an abnormal passage (fistula) from the end portion of the large intestine (rectum) into abnormal locations (e.g., the bladder, vagina, or perineum). Additional features may commonly include variable congenital heart (cardiac) defects, kidney (renal) abnormalities, skeletal defects, and/or other physical findings.


MAGIC Foundation
6645 W. North Avenue
Oak Park, IL 60302
Tel: (708)383-0808
Fax: (708)383-0899
Tel: (800)362-4423

National Center for Chromosome Inversions
213 SE Charmont Lane
Lake City, FL 32025
Tel: (386)752-1548

American Liver Foundation
39 Broadway, Suite 2700
New York, NY 10006
Fax: (212)483-8179
Tel: (800)465-4837

National Association for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments (NAPVI)
P.O. Box 317
Watertown, MA 02272-0317
Tel: (617)972-7441
Fax: (617)972-7444
Tel: (800)562-6265

Chromosome Disorder Outreach, Inc.
P.O. Box 724
Boca Raton, FL 33429-0724
Tel: (561)395-4252
Fax: (561)395-4252

American Council of the Blind
2200 Wilson Boulevard
Suite 650
Arlington, VA 22201
Tel: (202)467-5081
Fax: (202)465-5085
Tel: (800)424-8666

American Heart Association
7272 Greenville Avenue
Dallas, TX 75231
Tel: (214)784-7212
Fax: (214)784-1307
Tel: (800)242-8721

NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
P.O. Box 30105
Bethesda, MD 20892-0105
Tel: (301)592-8573
Fax: (301)251-1223

NIH/National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive & Kidney Diseases
Office of Communications & Public Liaison
Bldg 31, Rm 9A06
31 Center Drive, MSC 2560
Bethesda, MD 20892-2560
Tel: (301)496-3583

International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders
700 W. Virginia St., 201
Milwaukee, WI 53217
Tel: (414)964-1799
Fax: (414)964-7176
Tel: (888)964-2001

Children's Liver Disease Foundation
36 Great Charles Street
Birmingham, B3 3JY
United Kingdom
Tel: 01212123839
Fax: 01212124300

UNIQUE - Rare Chromosome Disorder Support Group
P.O. Box 2189
Surrey, CR3 5GN
United Kingdom
Tel: 4401883330766
Fax: 4401883330766

Chromosome 22 Central
c/o Murney Rinholm
7108 Partinwood Drive
Fuquay-Varina, NC 27526
Tel: (919)567-8167

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
TDD: (888)205-3223

Madisons Foundation
PO Box 241956
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Tel: (310)264-0826
Fax: (310)264-4766

For a Complete Report:

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site or email

Last Updated: 5/27/2008
Copyright 1997, 1999, 2001, 2002 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization for Rare Disorders

Last Updated: May 28, 2015
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

Today on WebMD

Woman holding tissue to reddened eye
Learn about causes, symptoms, and treatments.
Simple annoyance or the sign of a problem?
red eyes
Symptoms, triggers, and treatments.
blue eye with contact lens
Tips for wearing and caring.
Understanding Stye
human eye
eye exam timing
vision test
is vision correction surgery for you
high tech contacts
eye drop