Hallermann-Streiff Syndrome

Clinical Characteristics
Ocular Features: 

Nearly all patients (80+ %) have microphthalmia and bilateral congenital cataracts.  Microcornea is common.  The eyebrows may be hypoplastic and the eyelashes likewise are sparse.  The lid fissures often slant down and telecanthus has been noted.  The distance between the two eyes appears reduced.  Blue sclerae, nystagmus, strabismus, and glaucoma are present in 10 to 30% of patients.

Systemic Features: 

The facies are sometimes described as 'bird-like' with a beaked nose, brachycephaly, and micrognathia.  Microstomia with a shortened ramus and forward displacement of the termporomandibular joints is characteristic. Upper airway obstruction may occur with severe respiratory distress.  The forehead is relatively prominent, the palate is highly arched, and the teeth are often small and some may be missing with misalignment of others.  A few teeth may even be present at birth (natal teeth).  Children appear petite and are often short in stature.  Scalp hair is thin, especially in the frontal and occipital areas, and the skin is atrophic.  Developmental delays are common but most patients have normal or near-normal intelligence.


Most cases are sporadic but some have mutations in the GJA1 gene (6q21-q23.2).  Both autosomal dominant and autosomal recessive inheritance have been postulated.  Reproductive fitness may be low but rare affected individuals have had affected offspring.  Males and females are equally affected.

This disorder is allelic to oculodentodigital dysplasia (257850, 164200).

Treatment Options: 

Airway obstruction may require intervention and its risks must be considered during administration of general anesthesia.  Lens opacification may be severe even early in life and requires prompt surgical intervention to prevent amblyopia.

Article Title: 


Pasyanthi B, Mendonca T, Sachdeva V, Kekunnaya R. Ophthalmologic manifestations of Hallermann-Streiff-Francois syndrome: report of four cases. Eye (Lond). 2016 Sep 30(9): 1268-71.

PubMedID: 27472202

Cohen MM Jr. Hallermann-Streiff syndrome: a review. Am J Med Genet. 1991 Dec 15;41(4):488-99. Review.

PubMedID: 1776643

Salbert BA, Stevens CA, Spence JE. Tracheomalacia in Hallermann-Streiff syndrome. Am J Med Genet. 1991 Dec 15;41(4):521-3.

PubMedID: 1776648