Spina Brifida Research Paper

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• Treatments: There currently is no cure for Spina Bifida. However, due to the ability of early detection, intervention can take place as early as 25 weeks gestation. Though the nerve tissue damage associated with Spina Bifida can not be restored nor repaired, both surgical procedures and nonsurgical procedures can aid in preventing further damage while also managing the effects of current spinal cord impairment.
• Surgical Intervention: o Myelomeningocele closure
▪ Fetal: According to the MOMS study, this type of surgery has been shown to yield the most effective results. The procedure is intended to prevent exposure of the spinal cord and nerve roots to harmful elements that may be found in the amniotic fluid. A surgeon will make a hysterotomy
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The neural tube of a fetus typically closes in utero within 4 weeks after conception. The cause of this defect remains unknown to many researchers and is believed to be dependent on several factors such as genetics, nutrition, environmental elements, or any combination of these. o Sex Factors:
▪ According to the study conducted by Kondo, Kamihira, and Ozawa, a common mutation in the MTHFR along with the lack of folic acid as been identified as a risk factor in Spina Bifida.
▪ Researchers of this study also found that there were more female fetuses afflicted with Spina Bifida as opposed to male fetuses (Kondo, et al. 2008, p. 50).
▪ The results of the study conducted by Gary M. Shaw, Suzan L. Carmichael, Zhanna Kaidarova, and John A. Harris of the Birth Defect Monitoring Program provided evidence that Spina bifida with hydrocephalus and Spina bifida without hydrocephalus are more prevalent in female fetuses.
• Researchers of the study suggest that one sex is more susceptible to certain endogenous or exogenous factors during a critical embryonic time period (Shaw, et al. 2003, p. 957). o Geographic Factors:
▪ During 1999-2004, Hispanic infants in the Unites States had the highest prevalence of neural tube defects in comparison to Whites and Non-Hispanic Blacks (Boulet, 2008, p.

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