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can children or adults with spina bifida walk without braces or crutches?

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  • can children or adults with spina bifida walk without braces or crutches?

    I was just wondering if there are people with spina bifida that can actually walk without braces, wheel chair, or crutches. It would be nice if my little girl could experience walking even if she couldn't walk for long distances.

  • #2
    Yeah some people sure can. My cousin has sb at L5 level and had afos until he was 8 and has walked unaided since then (hes 13 now). I've also been told my daughter will be able to walk without afos but she will tire very easily without them so it is better she wears them all the time. She's has sb at L4/L5.

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    • #3
      My 2 year old walks unaided so far. She can also run, but she falls a lot. She tires easily and gets pretty wobbley sometimes.
      Mama to an adorable 4 year old girl with SB, lipomyelomeningocele, TCS, neurogenic bladder & bowels
      http://www.mindfulmeerkats.blogspot.com

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      • #4
        It depends entirely on the location of the lesion.
        Damage below L4 generally has minimal or no effect on the feet and legs.
        Major leg muscles are controlled from L1 to 3.
        I will try to find a myotome chart that shows what nerves control which muscles.
        There is a dermatome chart floating around here somewhere that maps the skin's sensory nerves.
        Roger
        Sumus semper in excretum sed alta variat!

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        • #5
          o.o
          I've always been able to. Just with age, I've gotten AFOs for long distances. I had them as a kid as well, but I never wore them unless I was going skating. >.>
          As a kid, I didn't even need them for long distances, and I played sports and ran around all crazy like.

          So yes. Depending on what part of the spine is affected, one most definitely can walk without them.
          -NerdaliciouS-

          "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." ~ Socrates

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Dodger67 View Post
            It depends entirely on the location of the lesion.
            Damage below L4 generally has minimal or no effect on the feet and legs.
            Major leg muscles are controlled from L1 to 3.
            Roger, do you have any idea where my daughter's "damage" would come from? Her feet are definitely involved, she has the high foot arches (especially on one side) and the dropfoot, though it's minimal. And she also complain about some skin involvement, like pins and needles ontop of her feet, etc. I understand that bladder and bowel is S2-4, is that correct? But why would her legs be involved, albeit minimal, with just a tight filum?
            Mom of 4. My daughter (9) had an occult tethered cord, neurogenic bladder and bowel, and dropfoot.
            http://roadtosanmichele.blogspot.com/

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            • #7
              The sacral nerve roots definitely affect the feet, especially the big toe (if that nerve is affected, it can result in drop foot).
              49-yr-old, lumbo-sacral SBO with split cord malformation, lipomyelomeningocele, and partial sacral agenesis; walk with one AFO & crutch; self-cath; college professor w/a PhD

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              • #8


                Gymp
                I think,I think I am,therefore I am,I think.
                (Moody Blues "In the Beginning")

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                • #9
                  To Chrissy

                  Walking is not important. My son does not walk but I don't care. Noah is fast in his wheelchair and has begun to army crawl as well. His lesion is L1, but he functions at T8.

                  If I meet another mom like me, who is anxious and scared, I'm going to tell her I know someone with spina bifida and she has many friends, I know someone with spina bifida and she has a sense of humor. Because that was what I needed to hear that post diagnosis day.
                  Last edited by thara; 09-28-2014, 04:33 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Hi, I am 23 and for my whole life I have walked without any aids for my whole life. I have SB at L5, S1, 2 and 3.

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                    • #11
                      I am quickly approaching 34 and I have never needed crutches, braces or a wheelchair. I am hoping to get both crutches and a wheelchair now as distances have become difficult. But the with the type of SB I have I think it's more common not to need a lot of mobility aids.
                      lipomyelomeningocele, tethered cord, nerve damage began as a young adult, still have lots to learn about living with SB!

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                      • #12
                        I used to, but now I'm on crutches (I have myelo. T-2 incomplete).

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                        • #13
                          I have never needed any braces or crutches in my life. I used to wear specially made insoles in my shoes through my childhood and younghood. Maybe I should still wear them but I just don't see any reason for that. I don't have any pain without them. I have lumbosacral myelo.

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