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disease of the spine - help!!

Eric Wassermann ewass at helix.nih.gov
Mon Sep 27 16:07:06 EST 1993


In article <dorene-240993142114 at bsd-mac11.bsd.uchicago.edu>,
dorene at delphi.bsd.uchicago.edu (Dorene E. Besser) wrote:
> 
> Hello!!
> 
> My mother has a friend whose son was married recently, and she found out
> that her new daughter-in-law has, as her mother put it, a slight case of
> spina bifida, and scoliosis (is it possible to have a slight case of either
> of these?).  She is very concerned, obviously, and she asked me if I might
> post an article to pick your (the experts) brains about these two
> 'conditions'.  I realize that it is more of a spinal question, but I was
> hoping that it may also deal with neurology - since there aren't any spinal
> categories, I thought I'd try my luck.  
> 
> If anyone can give me some information that a lay-person could understand,
> I would really appreciate it.  Also, if anyone knows of a foundation or
> something that does spinal research who would be able to supply me with
> information, please post it here, or preferrably, send it to me via E-mail.
> 
> Thank you very much in advance.
> 
> <=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=>
> Dorene E. Besser
> The University of Chicago
> dorene at delphi.bsd.uchicago.edu
> "Love comforteth like sunshine after rain"  -William Shakespeare
> <=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=><=>
Spina bifida is near the severe extreme on a spectrum of disorders
collectively called spinal dysraphism.  These are congenital problems
caused by defective fusion of the neural tube during early gestation. 
Milder forms may be detected only the presence of a dimple in the skin of
the lower back or have an surgically correctable defect in the spine (not
the spinal cord).  More severe forms are obviously quite serious and
usually result in paralysis of the legs or may be seen in in combination
with congnenital disorders of the skull and brain.  

There is no real reason for concern since usually most of these conditions
are present at birth and only some of them worsen with time and this is
usually during growth of the spine.  It is not hereditary and looks as
though it can be prevented by taking vitamin D (or A, I forget) during the
earliest time of pregnancy.  Hope this helps.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      As far as I know,
Eric Wassermann                       The opinions expressed are not
Human Motor Control Section           those of the Federal Government,
NINDS, NIH                            the U.S. Public Health Service
                                      or the National Institutes of Health
                                        



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