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Occult spinal dysraphism: neurogenic voiding dysfunction and long-term urologic follow-up


From 1976 to 1994, we followed 55 children with occult spinal dysraphism (OSD). The average age at diagnosis was 4.5 years (range: 24 days–21 years). In 13 cases the OSD was associated with anorectal anomalies. Urologic symptoms were present at diagnosis in 24 children (43%), but urinary incontinence affected all patients in the evolution of the OSD. At diagnosis, all children underwent complete neurourologic and urodynamic evaluation. Nine required early neurosurgical correction, before 3 years of age. During follow-up, intermittent clean catheterization was started in all patients. Vesicoureteral reflux was present or developed in 17 patients: 15 underwent endoscopic procedures and 2 required bladder augmentation because of upper-tract and renal-function deterioration. Endoscopic treatment for urinary incontinence was performed in 3 children. At long-term follow-up (6 to 18 years), socially acceptable continence was achieved in 78% of the children; renal failure occurred in 8. The long-term results were analyzed in order to compare the evolution of urinary continence and renal function in children with OSD with or without neurosurgery.

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Silveri, M., Capitanucci, M.L., Capozza, N. et al. Occult spinal dysraphism: neurogenic voiding dysfunction and long-term urologic follow-up. Pediatr Surg Int 12, 148–150 (1997).

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Key words

  • Occult spinal dysraphism