Spina Bifida

  • Antonio Gonzalez FiolEmail author


Failed closure of the neural tube is known as spinal dysraphism. Spinal dysraphism refers to a heterogeneous group of abnormalities involving isolated or combined bony, spinal cord, and meningeal defects. Spina bifida was coined to describe a variety of congenital defects that occur as a result of a midline neural tube defect [1]. The term spina bifida describes a group of conditions that include spina bifida occulta and spina bifida cystica as well as others. Terminology is often used interchangeably between these conditions leading to much confusion. Spina bifida occulta results as a consequence of a failure to fuse the two halves of the vertebral arch [2]. Spina bifida cystica is characterized by the presence of a sac-like protrusion through the bony defect in the vertebral arch. Spina bifida cystica is subdivided into three types: spina bifida with meningocele, meningomyelocoele, or myeloschisis [3]. Occult spinal dysraphism is an intermediate condition with intact skin and both a bony defect and spinal pathology. Since occult spinal dysraphism is associated with one or more abnormalities of the spinal cord, it should not be confused with spina bifida occulta, which is a benign condition [2, 4].


Occult spinal dysraphism Spina bifida occulta Spina bifida cystica Autonomic hyperreflexia Latex allergy Anesthetic management 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of AnesthesiologyYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA

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