Additional problems such as latex allergies, skin problems, gastrointestinal conditions, and depression may occur as children with spina bifida get older. Spina bifida (cleft spine) is a birth defect affecting the spinal column. The human nervous system develops from a small, specialized plate of cells along the back of an embryo (called the neural plate). askus@marchofdimes.com Spina bifida occulta (SBO) is a common malformation of the spine. National Institutes of Health 1 Often with Spina Bifida Myelomeningocele, a type of Spina Bifida where this pocket of nerves and cerebrospinal fluid gather behind the spine, paralysis can occur below where the pocket forms on the spine. Spina= Latin: “spine” Bifida= Latin:“split”Occulta = Latin: “hidden.” (Unlike in “open” spina bifida, the defect in spina bifida occulta is not visible. Types of Spina Bifida. What are the signs and symptoms of spina bifida? Spina bifida is a birth defect where the spinal cord fails to develop properly while the baby is still growing in the womb. Spina bifida can occur anywhere along the backbone, but is most often found in the small of the back or further down. Spina bifida is a condition present at birth (birth defect) when there are problems with the spine, spinal cord, and the surrounding nerves. What is the prognosis? Many people don’t even know they have it. The location of the malformation on the spine often indicates the type of assistive devices needed. Spinal cord tissue may also be pushed out through the defect. Tel: 800-370-2943; 888-320-6942 (TTY) Introduction Fax: 202-884-8441. Complications of spina bifida can range from minor physical problems with little functional impairment to severe physical and mental disabilities. In addition to abnormal sensation and paralysis, another neurological complication associated with spina bifida is Chiari II malformation—a condition common in children with myelomeningocele—in which the brain stem and the cerebellum (hindbrain) protrude downward into the spinal canal or neck area. Learn about health issues and treatments for spina bifida. Children with both myelomeningocele and hydrocephalus may have learning disabilities, including difficulty paying attention, problems with language and reading comprehension, and trouble learning math. Spina bifida in its strictest sense means defective fusion of the vertebral posterior elements, leading to a bifid osseous configuration of the spine 16. These types of spina bifida range in severity from completely harmless and undetectable until an X-ray is performed later in life, to the spinal … It’s a type of neural tube defect (NTD) that occurs when a babies neural tube fails to develop or close properly – the literal meaning for Spina Bifida is “split spine”. How is spina bifida treated? This study will shed light on how folic acid prevents spina bifida and may lead to improved forms of folate supplements. Where can I get more information? For infants born with a myelomeningocele, the spinal cord does not form properly and a portion o… In most cases, spina bifida is diagnosed prenatally, or before birth. Therefore, the higher the malformation occurs on the back, the greater the amount of nerve damage and loss of muscle function and sensation. What are the complications of spina bifida? There are three types of spina bifida: spina bifida occulta, meningocele and myelomeningocele. While spina bifida occulta usually requires no treatment, the more severe types of spina bifida usually require surgery to close the opening in the back, to preserve spinal cord function, and to reduce the risk of infection. Spina Bifida Occulta – This is the mildest form of the condition. Spina Bifida Occulta. There may be a small birthmark, dimple or tuft of hair on the skin where the spinal defect is. Chiari II malformation may also result in a blockage of cerebrospinal fluid, causing a condition called hydrocephalus, which is an abnormal buildup of cerebrospinal fluid in and around the brain. Folic acid, also called folate, is an important vitamin in the development of a healthy fetus. This form consists of a diverse group of defects in which the spinal cord is marked by malformations of fat, bone, or meninges. Of damage and spinal cord spina bifida types nerves are in this case.Babies born with myelomeningocele may meningitis. 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