Having a child with Spina Bifida can be a frightening experience, but there are treatments available. These include medications, surgery, and other techniques. While undergoing treatment for Spina Bifida, you and your child will learn more about your condition and the best ways to cope with it.
Symptoms of spina bifida vary depending on the type of the condition, the area in which it is found, and the severity. Typically, people with the condition are more prone to infections than those who do not. Some may also experience urinary incontinence or bowel problems. Other people may develop partial paralysis, and require a wheelchair.
The most common symptom of spina bifida is that the spinal cord is not properly developed. This causes a part of the cord to push out through the vertebrae. The protruding part of the cord is covered by a layer of spinal fluid or CSF. If the fluid builds up, it puts pressure on the brain and can lead to brain damage.
In some cases, the protruding cord can cover a part of the brain, and this can cause meningitis, which is a serious infection. In most cases, these infections can be treated by inserting a shunt, which is a tube that drains the excess CSF to the abdomen.
Other symptoms of spina bifida include loss of sensation in the groin, legs, or arms. This may result in skin damage, including pressure sores, and it can also affect the child’s ability to walk. The child may need to wear braces or use crutches to help him or her move.
Some children may also develop bladder and bowel dysfunction, which is called tethered cord syndrome. Surgery is often necessary to correct this problem. This can help reduce the risk of complications later in life.
Spina bifida can also result in gastrointestinal problems. This can include bowel and bladder incontinence, and it can also lead to skin damage. In some cases, the person will need to wear continence pads to help manage this.
Surgical treatment is usually needed to reduce the amount of pressure on the brain. This is done to reduce the risk of developing hydrocephalus, an abnormal buildup of fluid in the brain. This can lead to learning problems. It is important to remember that it is vital to monitor the child’s kidney, bladder, and spine functions to prevent any complications.
Getting a diagnosis of spina bifida is a very important step in understanding the problem. This condition can affect a child’s neurological development and overall health. Symptoms of spina bifida vary according to the type of defect. In the most severe case, a baby may have total paralysis of his legs.
Spina bifida is characterized by the failure of the fetus’ spinal cord to close into the neural tube. This causes a protruding sac of fluid to form. The pressure from this fluid can cause problems with the head and bladder. It is a lifelong problem. Fortunately, most of the time, children with this defect can live normal lives.
There are three major types of spina bifida. The first type, known as occulta, occurs in about 10 to 20% of the population. It is a genetic condition. The fetal ultrasound and MRI can help detect the presence of this condition. In the most serious cases, a child may need surgery to correct the defect.
The second type of spina bifida, known as myelomeningocele, occurs when part of the spinal cord protrudes through the backbone. This occurs in one in 800 births. It can result in total paralysis of the legs, as well as orthopedic and bowel problems. In many cases, this defect will not be diagnosed until after the baby is born.
If your child has myelomeningocele, he or she will need close follow-up care to ensure that there are no long-term complications. This includes a specialized team of healthcare providers. Depending on the severity of the defect, your child will need special mobility aids to maintain his or her independence.
Typically, your child will need to see a neurosurgeon to repair the spinal cord. This will prevent further injury. The doctor will also work to maintain any deformities to a minimum. You and your child should discuss the options available to you.
If your child’s condition is severe, he or she will need a ventricular shunt to keep the fluid from accumulating in the brain. This shunt will remain in place throughout the child’s life.
Having spina bifida is not a life-threatening condition, but it can cause a number of complications. It can affect the brain and spinal cord. It can also cause bladder dysfunction and bowel problems.
Children with more severe forms of spina bifida will need special care throughout their lives. Treatment may include surgery and specialized mobility devices. A multidisciplinary approach is often the best way to treat the condition. Some children with more serious cases require several surgeries, assistive devices, and mobility skills.
Spina bifida is caused by a problem with the neural tube, a tubular structure that develops during the first month of pregnancy. The tubular structure is filled with fluid that protects the spinal cord and nerves. When the tubular structure fails to form, a gap develops between the bones and the spine. In most cases, a prenatal ultrasound will identify the defect.
If the defect is not closed, it can result in spinal cord injuries. These injuries can lead to paralysis and brain injury. It is possible to prevent this condition from developing by repairing the spinal cord before birth. A neurosurgeon will close the gap using muscles and skin.
A shunt can be inserted under the skin to drain excess cerebrospinal fluid into the abdomen. The shunt is generally replaced several times. During childhood, the child will need to learn to empty the bladder at regular intervals.
Having hydrocephalus, or a buildup of cerebrospinal fluid can increase pressure on the head. In addition, it can decrease the strength and feeling in the legs. The nerves that supply the bowel and bladder may be affected. Fortunately, most children with hydrocephalus are able to survive with the shunt.
In addition to a shunt, children with hydrocephalus will need detailed neurologic and muscular exams. In addition, regular monitoring will be needed for the kidneys, bladder, and spine.
A positive attitude toward treatment can help your child develop a healthy outlook. In addition, daily skin checks are taught at an early age.
Children with spina bifida may develop skin problems. They may have less sensation in their groin area and may develop a small birthmark.
Despite the fact that spina bifida is one of the most common birth defects, there are some complications that families should be aware of. Children with the condition can have skin problems, deformities in the ankles or hips, and bladder and bowel issues.
Spina bifida is a disorder that affects the brain and spinal cord. This happens because the fetal spinal cord fails to close properly. The problem may be caused by genetic factors.
The symptoms of spina bifida vary from mild to severe. A person with the condition usually has weak legs and core muscle weakness. He or she may also use wheelchairs or leg braces to get around. The most severe form of the disorder is called myelomeningocele, which occurs when the meninges or arachnoid mater protrude through an opening in the vertebrae. The key priorities in treating this condition are to protect the exposed nerves and to prevent infection.
Hydrocephalus, or excess cerebrospinal fluid, is another complication that a child with spina bifida can develop. The extra fluid can cause pressure on the inside of the head, which can cause damage to the brain. Most babies with this condition will require a shunt to drain the excess fluid from the brain. Depending on the severity of the case, the shunt may need to be replaced several times.
Other complications of spina bifida can include tethered cord syndrome. This can occur with all types of disorders and can lead to decreased feeling and nerve damage. In more serious cases, the legs can be completely paralyzed.
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke supports research into spina bifida. The organization conducts research at major medical institutions in the U.S. They are headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland.
The treatment for spina bifida involves surgery on the baby after birth. Surgery is usually necessary to close the spinal cord defect and prevent further damage. Other procedures can be performed to repair bones, bladder, or bowel function.
A baby with spina bifida may need to be placed in a neonatal intensive care unit. In some cases, a cesarean section can reduce the risk of spinal cord damage.
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