Does the mother generally know she is pregnant when the neural tube is developing?
(See Tecklin, page 166.)
Note this chart illustrates WEEKS of gestation (pregnancy).
Clinical considerations: At what point could health professionals prevent the development of neural tube defects? (See Tecklin, page166.) Consider the role of the PT in health promotion and prevention through education.
T he United States Public Health Service recommends that: " All women of childbearing age in the United States who are capable of becoming pregnant should consume 0.4 mg of folic acid per day for the purpose of reducing their risk of having a pregnancy affected with spina bifida or other neural tube defects." Folic acid is a "B" vitamin that can be found in such foods as: cereals, broccoli, spinach, corn and others, and also as a vitamin supplement.
Physiological changes below the level of the lesion generally include:
abnormal nerve conduction, resulting in:
changes in muscle tone*
*Note: Muscle tone can range from flaccid to normal to spastic; may have UMN signs with/without true spastic paraparesis; progression of neurologic dysfunction or change in neurologic status most concerning