Urologic guidelines for the care and management of people with spina bifida

David B. Joseph, Michelle A. Baum, Stacy T. Tanaka, Dominic C. Frimberger, Rosalia Misseri, Rose Khavari, Sharon Baillie, Elizabeth B. Yerkes, Hadley Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: The life expectancy for people with spina bifida has increased, thus resulting in greater need for guidelines in urologic care in order to protect normal renal function, to develop strategies for urinary continence, and to advance independence through adult years. METHODS: The English literature was assessed from 2002-2015; greater than 300 publications identified. Case reports and opinion pieces were eliminated leaving 100 for in depth review. Clinical questions were then established for each age group that allowed for focused assessment. RESULTS: There was no Level 1 evidence for any of the defined clinical questions. This resulted in group consensus for all questions throughout all age groups. Guidelines were provided for identifying a symptomatic urinary infection, the role of urodynamic bladder testing and identification of bladder hostility, determining methods of renal function assessment and surveillance, the initiation of continence control, and transitioning to self-care through the teen and adult years. CONCLUSION: Urologic guidelines continue to be based on clinical consensus due to the lack of high level evidence-based research. Further research is required in all aspects of urologic management. While not the 'Standard of Care,' these guidelines should be considered 'Best Practice'.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)479-489
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2020


  • Spina bifida
  • myelomeningocele
  • neural tube defects
  • neurogenic bladder
  • spinal dsyraphism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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