Our pediatric orthopedic physicians are experts in treating your child with spina bifida from childhood into adulthood with consistency of care. Medical City Children’s Orthopedic Spine Specialists understand the complexities of treating this condition and know the importance of treating patients beyond the age of 18.
Your child will never outgrow our practice. We continue to treat children with Spina Bifida beyond the age of 18.
If your child is diagnosed with spina bifida, it can be a scary situation. However, it’s important that parents understand they are not alone in handling this complex medical condition. The best news is that skilled pediatric orthopedic physicians like Dr. Kishan, Dr. Hostin, and Dr. Wiesman can provide effective treatments to help you manage the condition before and after surgical intervention and help you and your child face the lifelong health considerations related to this developmental condition.
If you have questions or want to schedule a consultation for your child with our team, our physicians will take the time to walk you through the treatment options so that you can make a decision together.
We have four convenient DFW Metroplex locations in Arlington at Arlington Medical City Hospital in building A, Dallas at Medical City Hospital in building C, Frisco at Frisco Square, and in McKinney at McKinney Medical City Hospital. This ensures there’s a DFW area office near you where you child can receive comprehensive care.
Spina bifida is a condition that affects the development of the back bones, spinal cord, nerves, and the fluid-filled sac that surrounds the spinal cord. This advanced neurological condition may cause part of the spinal cord or surrounding structures to develop outside of the body instead of internally. Spina bifida can affect any portion of the spinal cord.
There are three main types of spina bifida:
In the moderate and severe forms, spina bifida diagnosis is clear due to the protrusions from the back. However, the mild spina bifida occulta may go undetected following birth. In some situations, infants have a harry spot, mole, or other visual marker that indicate this condition. Others may receive diagnosis prior to birth if the mother decides to undergo amniocentesis. This can reveal high levels of alpha fetoprotein (AFP) that are often indicative of spina bifida. In some cases, you may also be able to see the changes to the spinal cord during an ultrasound. If none of these indicators of spina bifida occulta are present, your child’s case may go undiagnosed for a time until difficulty with motor skills and other symptoms indicate a need for testing. Then, ultrasound, CT scans, and MRIs may be used to make an accurate diagnosis.
The advantage of being with Medical City Hospital is the focus on both adults and pediatrics. If, while pregnant, your OBGYN detects high levels of alpha fetoprotein (AFP), your physician can immediately refer you to Medical City Children’s Orthopedic and Spine Specialists and set up a consultation with Drs. Kishan, Hostin or Wiesman to immediately discuss treatment options.
Like muscular dystrophy, spina bifida cannot be cured. However, with proper treatment and symptom management, your child can lead a long, healthy life. Treatment for spina bifida is largely dependent upon which of the three types your child is suffering from. There are both surgical and nonsurgical treatments that may be recommended depending upon the severity of this disorder.
Nonsurgical Treatments Typically, nonsurgical treatments are only beneficial for those patients with the two milder forms of spina bifida. These therapies may include:
Surgical Treatments For the more severe forms of spina bifida, we may need to perform one or more surgical treatments, including:
“Since this is a lifelong condition, we spend quality time with the child and the family to get to know them so that the treatment approach is very collaborative in nature. We also look at the life of the child and make treatment plans, looking to the future, well beyond the end of the normal pediatric age of 18. We want to be part of a consistent treatment into adulthood.” Kathryn Wiesman, MD