Early postnatal bladder function in fetoscopic myelomeningocele repair patients

Gene O. Huang, Michael A. Belfort, William E. Whitehead, Oluyinka O. Olutoye, Jonathan Castillo, Heidi Castillo, Kathryn K. Ostermaier, Chester J. Koh, Duong D. Tu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: Prenatal repair of myelomeningocele (MMC) via hysterotomy has demonstrated neurosurgical and motor benefits, when compared to postnatal repairs. Urologic benefits, however, remain to be seen. The purpose of this study was to review early postnatal bladder function in patients undergoing a novel endoscopic approach for MMC repair using an exteriorized uterus. METHODS: A prospective urologic assessment of patients undergoing fetoscopic MMC repair and receiving subsequent care at our facility, was performed. Patients were managed and urodynamic studies risk-stratified according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Urologic and Renal Protocol for the Newborn and Young Child with Spina Bifida. RESULTS: Fetoscopic MMC repair was performed in 14 patients. No patients had hydronephrosis or bladder thickening at birth. Detrusor overactivity was observed in nine (64.3%) patients. Impaired compliance was seen in eight (57.1%) patients. No patients had a detrusor leak point pressure of > 40 cm H2O or evidence of detrusor sphincter dyssynergia. Three (21.4%) patients had vesicoureteral reflux, seven (50.0%) had an open bladder neck, and none had trabeculated bladders. CONCLUSION: In this early experience with fetoscopic MMC repair, postnatal bladder function does not appear to be any worse than that of previously reported prenatal or postnatal closures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)327-333
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 2017


  • Neural tube defects
  • Neurogenic urinary bladder
  • Spinal dysraphism
  • Urodynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation


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