Short chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (SCAD) deficiency is a rare autosomal recessive genetic disorder of fatty acid catabolism belonging to a group of diseases known as fatty acid oxidation disorders (FOD). It occurs because of a deficiency of the short-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (SCAD) enzyme.
Although SCAD was initially thought to produce severe problems including progressive muscle weakness, hypotonia, acidemia, developmental delay, and even early death, it is now believed that this disorder is both more common and less severe in many cases than originally thought at the time of its discovery 20 years ago. Since the advent of expanded newborn screening programs using tandem mass spectrometry technology, many more SCAD infants are being detected, most of whom are well and asymptomatic.
When symptoms are present, they are variable, ranging from severe, neonatal acidosis to mild developmental delay with hypotonia.