Genetic Counseling

School of Health and Human Sciences

About the Book

Love Makes a Family: For girls with Turner syndrome and their parents is a children’s book for girls with Turner syndrome that focuses on infertility and family planning. The purpose of this book is to help parents and their daughters begin to have a positive, open, and continually evolving discussion about the many wonderful ways a family can be made. Digital versions of the book in English and Spanish can be accessed using the links below:

Read the book in English

Spanish

This book was written by 2020 graduate Aimee (Durrett) Morrow in fulfillment of her capstone project “Development of a Children’s Book on Infertility and Family Planning for Girls with Turner Syndrome.” She worked with a committee made up of genetic counselors and program faculty members Randi Culp Stewart and Rachel Mills, pediatric endocrinologist Dr. Jennifer Badik, and children’s book author Jaime Aviva Brown. With their guidance and after reviewing scientific literature and children’s books regarding various health topics, Aimee developed a first draft of the book. This draft was then reviewed by parents of girls with Turner syndrome and healthcare providers recruited by the Turner Syndrome of the Carolinas organization. The final version of the book was produced using their feedback. Illustrations for the book were created by Arianna Pappas (UNCG School of Art, Class of 2020). Initial copies of the book were printed by UNCG Spartan Printing Services and were distributed to the various Turner syndrome clinics and organizations throughout the United States.

We hope to make hard copies of the book available for purchase soon. Please check back here for updates or reach out to Aimee at amdurrett15@gmail.com.

Funding for this project was provided by the Theodore and Loretta Williams Graduate Research Fund for Arts Health, the National Society of Genetic Counselors Education Special Interest Group, and the National Society of Genetic Counselors Pediatric and Clinical Genetics Special Interest Group.

About Turner Syndrome

Turner syndrome (TS) is a common genetic condition that affects approximately 1 in 2,500 females. Typically, a female has two copies of the X chromosome inside each cell. Turner syndrome results from the full or partial loss of one copy of the X chromosomes, leading to the presence of only one X in some or all of an individual’s cells.

This condition is present as the embryo is developing and throughout life. Individuals with TS may be diagnosed at any time during life, but they may also be diagnosed before birth through different genetic tests in pregnancy, such as noninvasive prenatal screening.

Girls with TS are often shorter than their peers and they may have characteristic physical features, such as a webbed neck, a shield-shaped chest, moles or freckles, and swelling of the hands and feet. Other differences, such as kidney and heart defects, may also be present. Finally, many girls and women with TS experience premature ovarian failure. Premature ovarian failure can make it challenging for women to naturally conceive a pregnancy, leading to infertility. Women with Turner syndrome can still be mothers if they choose. For women who cannot conceive naturally, other options, such as adoption, in vitro fertilization with their own or donated eggs, or surrogacy, exist. It is important to consult with a doctor such as an endocrinologist to determine what options are available for each individual.

Turner Syndrome Resources

Turner Syndrome Society of the United States: https://www.turnersyndrome.org/

Turner Syndrome Foundation: https://turnersyndromefoundation.org/

Turner Syndrome Global Alliance: http://tsgalliance.org/

Turner Syndrome of the Carolinas: http://turnersyndromecarolinas.org/

Genetics Home Reference: https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/turner-syndrome