The Achilles tendon joins the muscles of the calf to the bone of the heel and runs down the lower leg. This tendon can become inflamed when put under excess pressure. This is tendinitis in Achilles.
Achilles tendon is the body ‘s strongest tendon. It can withstand great strength but it is still vulnerable to injury.
Achilles tendinitis, or tendonitis, is typically the result of microtears that occur in the tendon during strenuous, high-impact exercise like running.
The tendon can get ruptured or torn untreated. Treatment may include resting or modifying an exercise regimen in mild cases but more serious cases may require surgery.
The therapy aims at alleviating discomfort and reducing swelling. Treatment option would depend on the severity of the condition, and whether or not the individual is a professional athlete.
A combination of strategies will likely be suggested by your doctor.
Treatment strategies for Achille tendinitis include:
- Ice packs: Applying these to the tendon, when in pain or after exercising, can alleviate pain and inflammation.
- Rest: This gives the tissue time to heal. The type of rest needed depends on the severity of the symptoms. In mild cases, it may mean reducing the intensity of a workout, but severe cases might require complete rest for days or weeks.
- Elevating the foot: Keeping the foot raised above the level of the heart can reduce swelling.
- Pain relief: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), such as ibuprofen, can reduce pain and swelling. People with asthma, kidney disease, or liver disease should first check with a doctor.
- Steroid injections: Cortisone, for example, can reduce tendon swelling, but it has also been associated with a greater risk of tendon rupture. Giving the injection while scanning the area with ultrasound can reduce this risk.
- Compression bandages and orthotic devices: Ankle supports and shoe inserts can aid recovery as they take the stress off the tendon. Heel lifts, which move the foot away from the back of the shoe, may help patients with insertional Achilles tendinitis.
- Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT): High-energy shockwaves are used to stimulate the healing process. Results have not been consistent, but if other measures do not work, it might be worth trying before opting for surgery.
It usually takes between a few days and 6 weeks for tendinitis to heal.
Surgery can remedy the tendon damage caused by Achilles tendinitis. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) suggests surgery only if the pain lasts for six months or longer.
The most common treatment is the regression of gastrocnemias. That involves lengthening one of the two muscles that make up the calf to allow a broader range of motion to the ankle.
Stretches and exercises
A physiotherapist may teach stretching exercises to improve flexibility and increase the strength of the calf.
Here are two exercises, suggested by the AAOS.
- Lean forward with your hands against a wall.
- Have one foot on the ground, with the leg straight, and one foot in front of it, with the knee bent.
- Push your hips toward the wall and hold for 10 seconds.
- Relax and repeat 20 times for each foot.
Bilateral heel drop
- Stand with the front half of your foot on the stair and the heel off, holding a rail to make sure you are balanced and will not fall.
- Slowly lift your heels and lower them as far as you can.
- Repeat 20 times.
Both exercises have to be carried out slowly and in a controlled way. Having them done quickly can increase the damage.
This can help heal the Achilles tendon and prevent future injury. Physical therapy for non-insertional Achilles tendinitis is normally more effective.
Achilles tendinitis’ key symptom is a gradual accumulation of pain that worsens over time.
In addition, the person may notice the following:
- The Achilles tendon feels sore a few centimeters above where it meets the heel bone.
- The lower leg feels stiff, slow, or weak.
- A slight pain appears in the back of the leg after running or exercising and becomes more severe.
- Pain in the Achilles tendon occurs while running or a couple of hours after.
- Pain is greater when running fast, for a long time, or when climbing stairs.
- The Achilles tendon swells or forms a bump.
- The Achilles tendon creaks when touched or moved
These and other similar symptoms feature in a number of conditions, so precise diagnosis requires medical advice.
A specialist should inquire about the signs and do a physical exam. They will touch the back of the ankle and tendon gently to find the pain or inflammation source.
The doctor will also check the foot and ankle to see whether it impairs the range of motion and endurance.
For example, an imaging examination, an x-ray, MRI, or ultrasound scan, can help remove other potential causes of pain and swelling and assess any damage to the tendon.
Achilles tendinitis may cause tendinosis of Achilles, a degenerative condition in which the tendon structure changes and becomes susceptible to serious damage. The tendon can tear, causing great pain.
Tendinitis and tendinosis are conditions which differ. Tendinitis involves inflammation, while tendinosis is a cellular-level degenerative process, and inflammation is not present. Sometimes the tendinosis is misdiagnosed as tendinitis. Having the correct diagnosis leads to better treatment.
Achilles tendinitis can grow in different ways. Others can be prevented more quickly than others, but being conscious of them can help with early diagnosis and help prevent serious injury.
Achilles tendinitis Non-insertional is more common in younger, more active individuals. The fibers in the center of the tendon begin to break down, thicken and swell.
Achilles tendinitis insertional is not necessarily activity related. As it inserts into the heel bone it affects the lower portion of the tendon.
Causes of Achilles tendinitis include:
- Using incorrect or worn out shoes when running or exercising
- Not warming up properly before exercise
- Increasing intensity of exercise too quickly, for example, running speed or distance covered
- Prematurely introducing hill running or stair climbing to an exercise routine
- Running on hard or uneven surfaces
- The calf muscle is injured or has little flexibility, putting more strain on the Achilles tendon
- Sudden intense physical activity such as sprinting for the finish line
Differences in anatomy of the foot, leg, or ankle can also cause tendinitis of Achilles. Flat feet or fallen arches may put the tendon under pressure.
Bone spurs are extra growths in bones where the tendon joins the bone. These are able to rub against the tendon of Achilles, causing damage and discomfort.
Patients taking antibiotics with fluoroquinolone may have a higher risk for tendinitis and tendon rupture. In 2008, the FDA requested that the prescribing information for Cipro, or ciprofloxacin, Factive, or gemifloxacin and others be added to a boxed warning.
The risk of injury does not disappear when the dosage stops. People reported having tendon problems several months after starting using the medication.
Recovery depends on the severity of a tendinitis.
The AAOS says that even with early treatment, it can take several months for the pain to go away.
If the pain does not resolve within 6 months, this may require surgery. Many who undergo surgery will not be able to return to competitive sports or run for a minimum of 12 months. Some aren’t going back to their sport.
The best way to avoid long-term complications is through prevention and early diagnosis.
Achilles tendinitis can not be completely prevented, but by being aware of the possible causes and taking precautions can reduce the risk of it developing.
- Varying exercise: Alternating between high-impact exercises, such as running, and low-impact exercise, for example, swimming, can reduce stress on the Achilles tendon on some days.
- Limiting certain exercises: Too much hill running, for example, can put excessive strain on the Achilles tendon.
- Wearing the correct shoes and replacing them when worn: Shoes that support the arch and protect the heel create less tension in the tendon.
- Using arch supports inside the shoe: This can help if the shoe is in good condition but does not provide the required arch support.
- Gradually increasing the intensity of a workout: Achilles tendinitis can occur when the tendon is suddenly put under too much strain, so warming up and increasing the level of activity gradually gives the muscles time to loosen up, and this puts less pressure on the tendon.
It is important to stretch and warm up before and after exercising. Stretching helps maintain flexibility in the Achilles tendon, so there is less chance of developing tendinitis. Everyday stretching, including days of rest, will further enhance flexibility.
Things to understand about the shoulder
The shoulder is a complex upper-body structure that connects the arms to the torso. It is made up of a number of parts that work together to offer stability and a wide range of motion.
The shoulder is a huge and complicated ball-and-socket joint with several bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These structures work together to construct and support this very flexible joint, which allows the arms to move freely. However, because of this mobility, the shoulder can be damaged by overuse, instability, or injury.
The anatomy, function, and structures of the shoulder will be discussed in this article.
Because of the variety of structures that make up the shoulder, it is a complex part of the body that can move freely. The shoulder includes the body’s most mobile joint, allowing for a high range of motion but at the sacrifice of stability. It’s prone to getting hurt.
Three primary bones meet at the shoulder to form a 90-degree angle. The pectoral girdle is made up of two of these bones: the clavicle and scapula. The collarbone and shoulder blade are the common names for these bones. The humerus, which is the biggest bone in the arm, is the third bone.
The glenohumeral, acromioclavicular, and sternoclavicular joints are formed by the intersection of these bones and the sternum, or chest bone. The great range of motion of the shoulder is due to these joints.
The joints are subsequently surrounded by cartilage, ligaments, muscles, and tendons, which unite the bones and provide stability. Muscles also enable movement.
The primary purpose of the shoulder is to offer a wide range of motion for the arms. People who can raise, lower, and rotate their arms can accomplish a variety of actions, including tossing and reaching, as well as athletic movements like swimming.
The shoulder’s bones and joints
The shoulder is made up of three bones. These are the following:
- The clavicle: This bone, also called the collarbone, connects the arm to the chest and is located in front of the scapula. It is connected to the arm, the neck, and the chest through a number of muscles.
- The scapula: The shoulder blade is also known as the scapula. It’s triangular in shape. It primarily adheres to the body through muscle and “floats” off the rear of the chest. The acromion, a bony component of the scapula, connects it to the clavicle. On the scapula, the glenoid is a shallow socket.
- The humerus: The humerus is the bone in the upper arm. Between the elbow and the shoulder is a lengthy bone called the humerus. At the top of the arm, the humerus bears a spherical part that acts as a “ball” for the scapula’s “socket.”
The shoulder is made up of three joints. These are some of them:
- The glenohumeral joint: A ball-and-socket joint is what this joint is. It is the joint that links the humerus to the scapula. It is the body’s most movable joint. The shoulder can move in various planes, including arm rotation and moving the arm up and away from the body, thanks to the joint.
- The acromioclavicular joint: The clavicle is joined to the scapula by this. The clavicle joins to the scapula by a bone component known as the acromion. The shoulder is stabilized by this joint, which also aids movement such as elevating the shoulders.
- The sternoclavicular joint: The clavicle is connected to the sternum by this. The sternum is the flat bone in the center of the chest, often known as the breastbone. The clavicles can move thanks to the joint.
Muscles of the shoulder
Extrinsic and intrinsic muscles make up the shoulder. Extrinsic muscles come from the torso and attach to the shoulder’s bones, whereas intrinsic muscles come from the scapula or clavicle and attach to the humerus.
The following muscles make up the intrinsic muscles of the shoulder:
- The deltoid: The deltoid is a triangular-shaped muscle on the outside of the shoulder. It connects the clavicle to the scapula. The deltoid muscle permits you to move your arm forwards, backwards, sideways, and away from your body. It also helps to keep the shoulder stable while carrying and lifting.
- Teres major: The scapula gives rise to this muscle, which joins to the humerus. Internal rotation of the arm is possible because to Teres major.
- Supraspinatus: This muscle originates from the scapula and attaches to the humerus. It helps to support the glenohumeral joint and allows the arm to move out from the body.
- Infraspinatus: The scapula gives rise to this muscle, which joins to the humerus. It turns the arm externally and stabilizes the glenohumeral joint.
- Teres minor: The teres minor stems from the scapula and connects to the humerus. It rotates the arm laterally while also stabilizing the glenohumeral joint.
- Subscapularis: The scapula gives rise to this muscle, which joins to the humerus. It permits the arm to rotate towards the body while also stabilizing the glenohumeral joint.
The rotator cuff muscles are the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, and subscapularis muscles. All of them come from the scapula and connect to the humerus. These muscles work together to raise and rotate the arm.
The following muscles make up the extrinsic muscles of the shoulder:
- The trapezius: The trapezius is a muscle that runs from the base of the head to the clavicle and scapula. The scapula is raised.
- Latissimus dorsi: The humerus bone is attached to this muscle, which originates in the lower spine. It assists with pull-ups and rowing exercises by bringing the arm backwards and towards the torso.
- Levator scapulae: This is a long, narrow muscle that aids in scapula elevation. It also aids in glenoid cavity rotation, spine stabilization, and neck extension and lateral flexion.
- Rhomboid major and rhomboid minor: The rhomboid muscles help rotate the glenoid cavity by stabilizing the scapula and maintaining it in place.
While the shoulder is incredibly mobile, its suppleness leaves it vulnerable to injury and instability. These injuries can limit your range of motion and cause shoulder pain. The following are some of the most prevalent shoulder ailments:
Rotator cuff injuries
Trauma to any of the muscles and tendons that make up the rotator cuff is referred to as a rotator cuff injury. The following are some of the most common rotator cuff issues:
- Tears: When a tendon is torn, it no longer fully adheres to the bone, which is a common injury. Injury and age-related deterioration are the most common causes of rotator cuff tears. While treatment varies depending on the severity of the condition, it usually include rest, pain medication, and rehabilitation activities. Surgery may be required in more severe situations.
- Bursitis: The bursa, which are fluid-filled sacs that cushion and protect tissues by decreasing friction, is inflamed. The bursa can be irritated and inflamed by infections or too much friction from repetitive movements or injuries. Antibiotics, rest, corticosteroid injections, and surgery may be used as treatment options in more severe cases.
- Tendinitis: This is an inflammation of the tendons that might cause it difficult to lift the arms. It usually happens as a result of tendons irritation or damage caused by sports or repetitive overhead movements. It’s also known as a shoulder impingement by certain people. Rest, physical therapy, and injections are common treatments, but if these don’t work, surgery may be required.
Arthritis is a condition in which the joints become inflamed. The cartilage in people with arthritis is destroyed, and the joint no longer has a smooth surface.
Arthritis can cause pain, decreased range of motion, and a clicking sounds in the shoulder joints, especially the acromioclavicular and glenohumeral joints.
The following are examples of arthritis that can affect the shoulder:
- rheumatoid arthritis
- avascular necrosis
- rotator cuff tear arthropathy
- post-traumatic arthritis
Treatment will vary depending on the type and severity of the arthritis, but it will usually start with nonsurgical options including rest, physical therapy, and pain relievers. When these methods fail or the pain becomes incapacitating, a doctor may recommend surgery.
Broken bones are also known as fractures. As a result, a shoulder fracture develops when the scapula, clavicle, or head of the humerus breaks. Fractures can occur as a result of:
- car accidents
Shoulder fractures can often be treated without surgery by a doctor. This usually entails wearing a sling to immobilize the shoulder and allowing it to heal. However, if the bone is entirely out of place, surgery may be required. This usually entails placing plates, screws, or rods inside the bone to stabilize the fracture.
When the humerus comes partially or completely out of the glenoid, it is referred to as a shoulder dislocation. The shoulder is the most often displaced joint due to its mobility, with forward, or anterior, dislocations accounting for roughly 97 percent of all occurrences.
A doctor will most likely conduct a closed reduction to repair a shoulder dislocation. This is a process in which the humerus is reinserted into the joint socket. After that, a doctor may recommend resting or immobilizing the shoulder before beginning rehabilitation exercises once the pain and swelling have subsided.
A dislocation can sometimes be so severe that it necessitates surgery. If the shoulder becomes unstable following a dislocation, surgery may be required to prevent recurrent dislocations.
Shoulder health advice
The following steps can be taken to ensure that a person’s shoulder is healthy and has a decent range of motion:
- before exercising, make sure you extend your shoulder muscles properly
- when working or playing sports, avoid overusing the shoulder muscles
- using an exercise program to strengthen the shoulder muscles
- shoulder pain should not be ignored, and if the pain persists, a doctor should be consulted
- attempting to stay away from activities that could result in a fall or accident
The shoulder is a complex structure with numerous bones, muscles, and tendons. These components come together to form a movable joint that allows the arms to move freely.
The shoulder, however, is prone to instability and injury since it is a mobile joint that many people utilize regularly. Rotator cuff injuries, shoulder arthritis, fractures, and dislocations can all cause pain and interfere with shoulder function. Treatment, rest, stretching, and exercising as soon as possible might assist to strengthen the shoulder and speed up healing.
Secondary osteoarthritis: What is it?
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a type of arthritis in which joint cartilage breaks down. There is no known cause of primary OA. Secondary OA, on the other hand, develops as a result of a pre-existing medical condition, joint injury, or abnormality.
Although primary and secondary OA are the same condition, they are caused by different causes.
OA can affect any joint in the body, causing pain, stiffness, and a restricted range of motion.
The symptoms and causes of secondary OA are discussed in this article. We also talk about treatment choices and the outlook for people who have the condition.
What is osteoarthritis (OA)?
OA is the most common type of arthritis, according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), and it typically affects elderly people.
OA is a joint condition in which the cartilage in the joints breaks down. It can occur in every joint of the body, however it most commonly affects the:
- lower back
According to the NIAMS, OA symptoms can range from mild to severe and may include:
- limited range of motion in the affected joint
- a loose or unstable-feeling joint
- swelling around the joint, which may worsen after activities that require using that joint
- joint pain, which may get worse at night
- stiff joints, which may occur after periods of rest or after sleeping
Primary vs. secondary OA
People with OA might have either primary or secondary OA. The symptoms of these illnesses are the same, but the causes are not.
There is no known cause of primary OA. Secondary OA, on the other hand, comes as a result of an existing medical condition, abnormalities, infection, or injury.
Secondary OA can be caused by a variety of causes, including:
- hemoglobinopathies, which are conditions affecting red blood cells
- Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
- Marfan syndrome
- inflammatory arthritis
- an existing joint abnormality
- injury or trauma to the joint
- metabolic disorders
- a joint condition present from birth
- infectious arthritis
- osteochondritis dissecans, where bone underneath joint cartilage dies due to a lack of blood supply
- Paget’s disease
- avascular necrosis, where bone tissue dies from a lack of blood supply
Secondary OA treatment seeks to alleviate pain, reduce stiffness, and improve range of motion and joint function. It may also assist to keep the condition from worsening.
Among the treatment options are:
According to research, combining aerobic and resistance activities can help reduce pain and enhance physical function.
Exercise can also assist to build muscle, enhance endurance, and increase flexibility. An OA workout regimen may include:
- Stretching exercises can help you enhance your range of motion.
- Strengthening muscles using weights or exercise bands, which then aids to support joints.
- Exercising to increase balance and agility, which can assist people maintain daily activities
- Exercise in water to alleviate joint tension, or engage in low-impact exercises such as walking, tai chi, or cycling.
People must avoid any activities that aggravate their symptoms or put additional strain on their joints.
Getting rid of excess weight
Losing additional weight can help alleviate joint tension.
In people with knee OA, decreasing one pound (lb) of body weight can ease four pounds of pressure on the knees.
Losing excess weight may also be beneficial:
- slow down progression of OA and cartilage breakdown
- decrease inflammation
- relieve pain and improve physical function
Braces, splints, and walking canes can assist stabilize joints and remove excess pressure.
Furthermore, if joints are misaligned, remedial equipment such as orthotics or knee braces may be beneficial.
Certain drugs may aid with pain relief and inflammation reduction. These could include:
- Anti-inflammatory and pain relievers taken orally
- To reduce pain, administer topical ointments to affected joints.
- Corticosteroids are pain relievers that a doctor may inject into the joint.
- Hyaluronic acid injections into the knee to promote joint lubrication are used to treat knee OA.
- Long-term pain relief with oral selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors.
If other therapies are ineffective, a person is suffering from serious joint degeneration, or OA is interfering with a person’s daily life, surgery may be required.
An osteotomy is a surgical procedure in which a physician removes a portion of bone near the injured joint in order to redistribute weight away from that joint.
A partial or whole joint replacement is another surgical option for OA, depending on the level of joint deterioration. This entails removing a portion or all of the joint and replacing it with a synthetic joint composed of plastic, ceramic, or metal.
Secondary OA risk factors include:
- having an abnormal joint structure or unusually aligned bones
- having muscle weakness
- being female
- having a family member with OA
- being over the age of 50 years
- having had a bone fracture, ligament or cartilage tear, or other joint injury
- overly using the same joints, which may happen as a result of certain occupations or sports
- having obesity, as excess body weight can put extra stress on joints and increase inflammation
The prognosis for OA varies from person to person and is determined by which joints are affected, the severity of symptoms, and level of physical function.
OA may be minor in some people, and they may be able to effectively manage their symptoms with treatment.
In other circumstances, people with OA may suffer from significant disability. For some people with severe OA, joint replacement surgery may be the best long-term option.
OA is a joint condition in which joint cartilage degrades, resulting in pain, stiffness, and reduced range of motion in the joints.
Secondary OA is caused by an existing condition, injury, or infection, whereas primary OA has no clear cause.
Treatment may help relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and prevent the condition from progressing.
Exercising, losing excess weight, using support equipment, and taking drugs are all possible treatment strategies. In some circumstances, surgery may be required to relieve joint stress or to replace a damaged joint.
What you should know about babies born with spina bifida
Spina bifida is a spine condition that is usually detected at birth by doctors. It is a neural tube abnormality that appears early in the development of a fetus and can occur anywhere along the spine.
The backbone, which normally protects the spine, does not form and seal properly in spina bifida. As a result, people with spina bifida frequently suffer from spinal cord and nerve damage.
Every year, around 1,500 babies in the United States are born with spina bifida. Although specialists are unaware of the exact causes of the condition, they advise females of childbearing age to ingest folic acid to lower the chance of neural tube defects.
This page discusses baby spine issues, such as spina bifida. It also discusses symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options.
Infant spine problems
The spine is made up of tiny bones called vertebrae that are piled on top of each other with discs in between. A healthy spine should have moderate bends from front to back to help absorb movement stress, but it should run straight down the center of the back.
Infants may have a variety of spine disorders that cause their back to twist or rotate. These are some examples:
- lordosis, an excessive inward curve of the spine
- spina bifida
- scoliosis, an abnormal sideways spinal curve
- kyphosis, an abnormal forward bending of the spine
The most frequent crippling congenital condition is spina bifida, which means “divided spine.” Doctors categorize the condition as a form of neural tube defect (NTD), in which the neural tube of a growing embryo does not develop or close as predicted. This causes nerve and spinal cord damage.
These complications appear throughout the first 28 days of pregnancy and may occur before a woman realizes she is pregnant.
Spina bifida is commonly referred to as the “snowflake condition” because no two cases are alike. Depending on the size and location of the incision, the condition might range from minor to severe.
Spina bifida is classified into three types:
- Myelomeningocele: This is the most common and severe type of spina bifida. It is also known as spina bifida cystica. Some vertebrae do not form normally in babies with this condition and do not properly encase the spinal cord. As a result, some of the spinal cord, nerves, spinal fluid, and other tissues push through the spine, forming a sac on the baby’s back. An individual may suffer from moderate to severe handicap as a result of nerve involvement.
- Meningocele: The baby with this kind of spina bifida has a bag bulging from the back. However, because the sac does not contain parts of the spinal cord and there is minimal nerve involvement, the individual may only endure modest problems.
- Spina bifida occulta: This is the least severe kind of spina bifida. Because there is merely a gap in the spine and no opening in the back, a person may be unaware that they have this problem. Babies that have spina bifida occulta may have a birthmark, dimple, or hair patch at the base of their spine.
Doctors are unsure what causes spina bifida. However, it appears to run in families, implying that genetics have a role in the condition.
Taking folic acid when pregnant lowers the chances of having a child with spina bifida. As a result, people who may get pregnant should take this B vitamin on a daily basis. Females of reproductive age should take 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid daily, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Spina bifida symptoms vary depending on the severity of the condition and may differ between individuals.
Myelomeningocele symptoms include:
- bowel and bladder issues
- curved spine
- open spine
- a skin-covered sac protruding from the back
- learning disabilities
- physical disabilities
A person with a meningocele may have no symptoms other than the sac protruding through their back.
Individuals with spina bifida occulta may be unaware of their condition until late childhood or adulthood. It may not cause any symptoms and, in most cases, does not cause in disability.
To detect spina bifida before birth, doctors can perform one of three tests:
- A blood test: During weeks 16–18 of pregnancy, doctors can obtain a blood sample from a woman. The level of alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) in the sample is then measured in a laboratory. AFP is a protein produced by the unborn baby and passed to the mother. If the fetus develops spina bifida, around 80% of pregnant people have high levels of AFP.
- Ultrasound: An ultrasound, often known as a sonogram, is a type of imaging that takes photos of the fetus in the uterus. Ultrasound is widely used by doctors to detect indications of spina bifida, such as an open spine.
- Amniocentesis: This test involves extracting a little amount of fluid from the uterus using a fine needle. Doctors can examine the sample for AFP levels, which may suggest that the fetus has spina bifida.
Spina bifida has no known cure. There are, however, various therapeutic options available for infants with spina bifida.
- Myelomeningocele: In the case of open spina bifida, a surgeon can seal the hole before or after the infant is born.
- Hydrocephalus: If a newborn has hydrocephalus, or water on the brain, a surgeon can insert a tube to drain the fluid. This tube, also known as a shunt, aids in the relief of head pressure and related symptoms.
- Tethered spinal cord: The spinal cord adheres to the spinal canal in this condition, limiting proper movement. The spinal cord extends unnaturally as the kid grows. A surgeon can untether or detach the spinal cord from the surrounding tissue, allowing the patient to resume normal movement. Doctors anticipate that up to 50% of children who have surgery for spina bifida shortly after birth will need surgery to untether their spinal cord later on.
- Catheterization: Individuals with open spina bifida may have nerve damage that prohibits them from having normal bladder function. A doctor may advise the child’s carers to catheterize the bladder and enable it to drain completely. This is accomplished by putting a small plastic tube known as a catheter into the bladder many times per day. Children with spina bifida must be evaluated on a regular basis by a urologist, a doctor who specializes in the urinary tract.
Furthermore, many people with spina bifida require mobility aids such as braces, crutches, or wheelchairs. Doctors may also advise patients to continue receiving physiotherapy.
The outlook of an infant with spina bifida is determined by the severity of their spinal abnormalities. For example, if an infant has full paralysis, hydrocephalus, and other congenital defects, his or her outlook may be bleak.
However, with proper care and medical attention, most infants with spina bifida survive into adulthood.
Spina bifida is one of various baby spine disorders that can occur during the development of a fetus in the uterus. There are three major varieties, with varying degrees of severity. Myelomeningocele is the most dangerous condition, in which a fluid-filled sac containing the spinal cord and other tissues protrudes through the infant’s back.
Meningocele is characterized by the presence of a sac but the absence of the spinal cord or nerves, and the patient may not feel severe symptoms. Spina bifida occulta is the mildest form of spina bifida, in which no sac protrudes through the back yet there is a breach in the spine. Individuals with this type of spina bifida may be unaware of their condition until they reach maturity.
Spina bifida has no cure because the nerve damage is irreversible. Surgery and other therapies, on the other hand, can help people manage their disability and mobility issues.