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Treatment of Spina Bifida

Treating Spina Bifida With Assistive Devices

People with spina bifida may require assistive devices such as braces, crutches, or wheelchairs. The location of the malformation on the spine will often indicate the type of assistive device that is needed.
 
Children with a defect that is high on the spine (and with more extensive paralysis) will often require a wheelchair, while those with a defect that is lower on the spine may be able to use crutches, bladder catheterization, leg braces, or walkers.
 

Treatment of Paralysis, Bowel, and Bladder Problems

Spina bifida treatment for paralysis, bowel, and bladder problems typically begins soon after birth. Options may include special exercises for the legs and feet that will help prepare the child for walking with braces or crutches when he or she is older.
 

What Is the Prognosis of Spina Bifida With Treatment?

Children with spina bifida can lead relatively active lives. A person's prognosis will depend on the number and severity of abnormalities and associated complications. Most children with spina bifida will be of normal intelligence and will be able to walk (usually with assistive devices). If learning problems develop, early educational intervention can be helpful.
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Spina Bifida Information

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