Spina Bifida Informative Speech

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Most people have never heard the words “spina bifida” in their life, but after today you will know what it is. Spina bifida is a neurological birth defect, where the backbone and the membranes around the spinal cord do not completely close, and even protrude out. This disorder can have no effect on a person or it can alter an individual’s life forever. I will begin by giving you some background information on the disorder and then I will tell about my sibling, who has this disorder.

Spina bifida in Latin is translated as ‘split spine’. This disorder develops during the first trimester and is tested for during prenatal care, during the second trimester. There is no definite cause for the disorder, but experts say genetics and environment play a vital role. It is believed that taking folic acid, in the beginning months of the pregnancy, reduces the chance of development this disorder. Anyone is capable of having a child with spina bifida and most people who have this disorder have no family history of it.

There are four forms of spina bifida that exist. The mildest form and most common form is occulta. This form is hidden and takes place when one or more vertebrae are malformed. This form does not pose a long-term medical problem
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My sister is 24 years old and she was born with the most severe form, myelomeningocele. She also has hydrocephalus, which is a buildup of cerebrospinal fluid in and around the brain. In order to drain that fluid and reduce the extra pressure, a shunt was placed in her head. Hydrocephalus and spina bifida go hand in hand. Despite having neurological problems my sister lives like any normal person; she likes to eat and do things that I do, but is just unable to walk.

Spina bifida is a disorder that has no cure, but that does not mean a person cannot live a healthy life. My sister is living proof that a person can be happy, even with a serve disorder as
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