Spina bifida is a malformation and failure of closing the caudal neural tube during the 4th week of embryogenesis. The causes are predominantly due to chromosomal mutations, genetic disorders and carcinogenic agents. However, majority are due to unknown reasons. Individuals with this defect require surgical management, including surgical closure of the malformation during the neonatal period. Medical management is also needed because spina bifida causes paralysis of the legs, incontinence of urine and feces, hydrocephalus and the Arnold-Chiari type II malformation. This condition can easily be prevented via the intake of nutrients and supplements including folic acids.
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