Isaiah Austin, an NCAA athlete who played center for the Baylor Bears\u2019 college basketball team, was destined to become a First Round NBA draft pick in June 2014. However, in the days leading up to the NBA draft, Austin tested positive for Marfan Syndrome. The diagnosis may have sidelined his career as an athlete \u2014but not as an advocate for those suffering from the disease.\nWhat is Marfan Syndrome?\nMarfan syndrome is a genetic disorder that affects one out of every 5,000 men and women. It impacts the body\u2019s connective tissue, which holds the body\u2019s cells and organs together, playing a large part in growth and development.\nThe disorder is genetically inherited, and does not discriminate on the basis of gender or race. Occasionally, an individual may become the first person in the family to develop the disorder. This is known as a \u201cspontaneous mutation.\u201d\nMarfan syndrome is present in a person from birth, though some of the signs aren\u2019t visible until the teen years or adulthood.\nSome telltale symptoms of Marfan syndrome are:\n\nAortic enlargement \u2014 this symptom may not be evident until a person is adulthood teenager or young adult\nTall stature\nThin body frame\nLong arms, legs, and fingers\nCrowded teeth\nFlat feet\nFlexible joints\nChest either sticks out or is sunken inward\nCurvature of the spine\nStretch marks on skin not related to rapid weight loss or gain\nEye problems such as extreme nearsightedness, early glaucoma, or cataracts\nSudden collapse of a lung\n\nIsaiah Austin fits the profile of many individuals with Marfan syndrome. He stands 7\u20191\u201d and has very long limbs \u2014 one characteristic of those with the disease.\u00a0 Austin is also blind in one eye as a result of a detached retina. Vision problems are a characteristic of Marfan syndrome, as well.\u00a0\nIs Marfan Syndrome Deadly?\nMarfan syndrome can potentially be fatal. The most common cause of death for those with the disorder is aortic dissection. Because Marfan syndrome affects the body\u2019s connective tissues, this means that a small tear in the walls of the heart and aorta can become bigger and cause the aorta to grow wider, resulting in an aneurysm.\nHow Can Marfan Syndrome Be Treated?\nThere is no cure for Marfan syndrome, but early detection and treatment can help to prevent or slow the progress of complications. Routine heart tests can help monitor heart health for those with Marfan syndrome. In some cases, surgery may be required to replace the affected portion of the aorta or the aneurysm in order to prevent aortic dissection. Additionally, there are now medicines, such as beta blockers and angiotensin receptor blockers, that can help to delay the development of an aortic aneurysm.\nChildren\u2019s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC participated in a national study performed by the Pediatric Heart Network to compare the effects of treatment with beta blockers versus angiotensin receptor blockers to prevent aortic aneurysms in pediatric patients with Marfan syndrome.\nWhat\u2019s Next for Isaiah Austin?\nAs reported by Forbes, Isaiah Austin recently launched a website and is committed to raising awareness of Marfan syndrome. His website offers t-shirts that sport the slogan \u201cDream Again.\u201d Sales of the shirts support the Marfan Foundation, a comprehensive resource for patients, loved ones, and health care professionals.\nIn an interview with ESPN, Austin said, \u201cI had a dream that my name was going to be called,\u201d despite his diagnosis. While he met with NBA officials ahead of the draft and discussed his ineligibility, the NBA planned to honor the young athlete and drive awareness to his cause.\nIn an emotional moment during the NBA draft, Austin was given a chance by the NBA to \u201cDream Again\u201d when NBA Commissioner Adam Silver called his name, making Austin\u2019s dream come true. Although Austin may be sidelined from the court due to Marfan syndrome, he is destined to make one of the greatest rebounds of his career by raising awareness for those who also live with the disease.