Document Detail

Muscle ultrasound density in human fetuses with spina bifida aperta.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19447572     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: In fetal spina bifida aperta (SBA), leg movements caudal to the meningomyelocele (MMC) are transiently present, but they disappear shortly after birth. Insight in the underlying mechanism could help to improve treatment strategies. In fetal SBA, the pathogenesis of neuromuscular damage prior to movement loss is still unknown. We reasoned that prenatal assessment of muscle ultrasound density (fetal-MUD) could help to reveal whether progressive neuromuscular damage is present in fetal SBA, or not. AIM: To reveal whether prenatal neuromuscular damage is progressively present in SBA. PATIENTS/METHODS: In SBA fetuses (n=6; 22-37 weeks gestational age), we assessed fetal-MUD in myotomes caudal to the MMC and compared measurements between myotomes cranial to the MMC and controls (n=11; 17-36 weeks gestational age). Furthermore, we intra-individually compared MUD and muscle histology between the pre- and postnatal period. RESULTS: Despite persistently present fetal leg movements caudal to the MMC, fetal-MUD was higher caudal to the MMC than in controls (p<0.05). Fetal-MUD caudal to the MMC did not increase with gestational age, whereas fetal-MUD in controls and cranial to the MMC increased with gestational age (p<0.05). In 5 of 6 patients assessed, comparison between pre- and postnatal MUD and/or muscle histology indicated consistent findings. CONCLUSIONS: In fetal SBA, persistent leg movements concur with stable, non-progressively increased fetal-MUD. These data may implicate that early postnatal loss of leg movements is associated with the impact of additional neuromuscular damage after the prenatal period.
R J Verbeek; J H van der Hoeven; K M Sollie; N M Maurits; A F Bos; W F A den Dunnen; O F Brouwer; D A Sival
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article     Date:  2009-05-17
Journal Detail:
Title:  Early human development     Volume:  85     ISSN:  1872-6232     ISO Abbreviation:  Early Hum. Dev.     Publication Date:  2009 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-07-31     Completed Date:  2009-11-17     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7708381     Medline TA:  Early Hum Dev     Country:  Ireland    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  519-23     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Neurology, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
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MeSH Terms
Gestational Age
Meningomyelocele / embryology,  pathology,  ultrasonography
Muscle, Skeletal / pathology,  ultrasonography*
Neuromuscular Diseases / embryology,  pathology,  ultrasonography
Spina Bifida Cystica / embryology,  pathology,  ultrasonography*
Ultrasonography, Prenatal

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