Children born with congenital birth defects experience a variety of secondary health complications that often must be addressed just as aggressively as the birth defect itself. If your child was born with complications associated with meningomyelocele, it is important to become familiar with not only the health risk but also the secondary complications that may arise.
In children who are born with meningomyelocele, there is a marked risk for complications associated with sensory defects and motor deficits, specifically in the bowel and bladder. With loss of sensation that spreads through the spinal cord, and affects the extremities, there can be marked complications associated with infections and injury without even realizing the complication exists.
During child growth and development when living with meningomyelocele, there is a marked risk for complications associated with bone development and bone structure. In children with meningomyelocele, there is a risk for fractures of the bones and, oftentimes, there are complications that develop without even realizing the complication is present.
When your child lives with meningomyelocele, it is important that you connect with a pediatric orthopedic surgeon who is well versed in this congenital birth defect. Because regular bone mass and bone density testing will be required, in addition to regular x-rays and CT scans, it will be important that you find a physician who understands this congenital defect so as to ensure your child gets the best possible medical attention.
Without detecting fractures in children who have meningomyelocele, there is a risk for greater complications with poor bone development and bone structure. In fact, many children find they are suffering from poor development and it is only then that non-healing fractures, or poor healing fractures, are identified. Scheduling regular visits with your child’s orthopedic doctor is important and, in the long term, it will help to reduce this secondary complication associated with meningomyelocele.
While not all birth defects lead to complications associated with bone development, the congenital defect of meningomyelocele can lead to many secondary complications including bone development complications. If your child has this complication, be sure you are familiar with all dynamic health complications that can arise and what you can do, as a parent, to minimize those risks.
Sources: Advances in Medical Sciences, Vol. 54(2), pp. 248-250.