LONDON – A surgeon team has successfully repaired two infants spinal cord while still in their womb’s uterus, the first surgery of its kind in Britain.
The operations were conducted during the summer at the University College Hospital in London with 30 surgeons to treat spina bifida, a condition where the spine and spinal cord are not properly developed in the uterus, causing a spinal spine.
“This leads to brain changes, as well as severe permanent damage to the nerves of the lower part of the body,” said Dominic Thompson, a neurosurgeon at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, who was involved in the operation, said Thursday in A statement.
The prenatal surgery involved opening the uterus, exposing spina bifida and closing the defect without delivering the child. Previously, mothers in Great Britain have to travel to the United States, Belgium or Switzerland to have the prenatal surgery or to wait for the child to be born.
Prof. Anna David, a obstetric consultant at the Institute of Women’s Health at University College London, said it took three years to take the procedure to Britain, where more than 200 children were born with spina bifida each year.
“Our determination to offer this service was based on the results of a major, randomized US control study that compared prenatal closure to postnatal closure and the observation that fetal surgery can be safely reproduced in Europe through appropriate training,” Professor David said in an email .
The United States attempt showed that prenatal closure of the defect resulted in a reduction of 50 percent of the need for a surgical shunt – a device that relieves the pressure on the brain caused by fluid retention – in newborns. The procedure may have long-term risks and complications. The prenatal procedure also showed a significant improvement in the child’s motor function at the age of 30.
“Long-term follow-up of children undergoing prenatal closure in the womb suggests that brain function, mobility and total independence were higher in nonshunted than shunted children at the age of 5,” Prof . Paolo De Coppi from UCL Great Ormond S tree Institute of Child Health, said in the study.
The operation will be made available to appropriate patients at the Center for Prenatal Therapy at University College London Hospitals and Great Ormond Street. It takes about 90 minutes and may result in early work.
The British government is preparing a consultation on whether to add folic acid to flour to reduce birth defects such as spina bifida. Research from the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition proposes that folic acid reduces the risk of abnormalities of the fetus.
Public Health Authority Steve Brine announced Tuesday that the government would consider evidence of the benefits of folklore testing as practice and safety.
Women trying to conceive are recommended to take a daily supplement of 400 microgram folic acid before they become pregnant or during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, but many women with unplanned pregnancies are missing. On the nutrients, state research has been found.
Plans to fortify flour with folic acid aim to reach those with the lowest intake, including younger women from deprived backgrounds.
“All women should have access to nutrients The need for a healthy pregnancy,” says Mr. Brine in a statement. “And, in turn, reduce the risk of devastating complications.”