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Spina Bifida is a Latin term meaning split spine It is the name given to a group of birth defects which interfere with the development of the central nervous system the brain the spinal cord and the nerve tissues It results from the failure of the spine to close properly during the first month of pregnancy In severe cases the spinal cord protrudes through the back and may be covered by skin or a thin membrane Surgery to close a newborns back is generally performed within 24 hours after birth to minimize the risk of infection and to preserve existing function in the spinal cord Because of the paralysis resulting from the damage to the spinal cord people born with spina bifida may need surgeries and other extensive medical care The condition can also cause bowel and bladder complications A large percentage of children born with spina bifida also have hydrocephalus the accumulation of fluid in the brain Hydrocephalus is controlled by a surgical procedure called shunting which relieves the fluid build up in the brain by redirecting it into the abdominal area Most children born with spina bifida live well into adulthood as a result of todays sophisticated medical techniques Recent studies have shown that one factor that increases the risk of having an neural tube defect baby is low folic acid status before conception and during the first few weeks of pregnancy If all women of childbearing age were to consume 04 mg of folic acid prior to becoming pregnant and during the first trimester of pregnancy the incidence of folic acid preventable spina bifida and anencephaly could be reduced by up to 75 Firstly do NOT diet during pregnancy or while you are trying to conceive without seeking medical advice It affects fertility and may take important nutrients from your baby Foods you should consider giving up or reducing
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