Spine Archive: Myelomeningocele

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Causes of Myelomeningocele

To learn more about spina bifida and related spine defects, please search Dr. Leone’s Knowledge Center.

In a birth defect such as myelomeningocele, the bones of the spine don’t form complete resulting in an incomplete spinal canal. This can cause the spinal cord to sick out of the patients back.

Unfortunately, the cause of this disorder is currently unknown. Some theories surrounding the causes of myelomeningocele include a lack of healthy folic acid level’s in the mom during development and radiation.

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Myelomeningocele, WNY

Spine Defects like myelomeningocele are explained here in Dr. Leone’s Knowledge Center. Scroll through keywords to find a topic.

Myelomeningocele (spina bifida, myelodysplasia) is the most common major birth defect, with an incidence in the United States ranging from 0.6 per 1,000 to 0.9 per 1,000 births. This neural tube defect results from embryologic failure of closure of neural crests during the neurulation phase of the spine in the third to fourth week after fertilization.¹

¹R. Vaccaro MD, Alexander. Orthopaedic Knowledge Update. Rosemont: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2005.

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Foot Deformities, WNY

Myelomeningocele and other spinal defects are covered here in Dr. Leone’s Knowledge Center.

The goal of treatment is to achieve supple, braceable, and plantigrade foot. Approximately 30% of children with myelomeningocele have rigid clubfoot at birth. Initial treatment includes serial casting, but correction is rarely achieved by nonsurgical treatment. Comprehensive posteromedial lateral release is indicated at or before walking age.¹

¹R. Vaccaro MD, Alexander. Orthopaedic Knowledge Update. Rosemont: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2005.

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Hip Deformities, Buffalo NY

Spasticity and myelomeningocele can lead to serious complications. Contact Dr. Leone to learn more.

Hip flexion contracture in children with myelomeningocele is caused by muscle imbalance, spasticity as seen in tethered cord patients, or habitual sitting posture. During the first two years of life, hip flexion contracture decreases except in high thoracic-level patients.¹

¹R. Vaccaro MD, Alexander. Orthopaedic Knowledge Update. Rosemont: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2005.