Spina Bifida Occulta
Spina Bifida Occulta is the mildest and most common form in which one or
more vertebrae are malformed. The name occulta, which means
hidden, indicates that the malformation, or opening in the spine, is covered
by a layer of skin. This form of spina bifida rarely causes disability or symptoms.
This is a mild form of spina bifida. There is no opening on the back, but
the outer part of some of the vertebrae are not completely closed. The split in the
vertebrae is so small that the spinal cord does not protrude. The skin at the site of the
lesion may be normal, or it may have some hair growing from it; there may be a dimple in
the skin, or a birthmark.
Spina bifida occulta usually causes no symptoms, and most people will remain
unaware that they have the condition. In such cases, no treatment is required.
People with this form may have incontinence, slight ambulatory
problems, and slight loss of sensation.
Spina Bifida Occulta diagnosis
Visualization of the defect on the back
Spinal X-rays show the bony defect.
Spinal MRI scans can detect the degree of damage to spinal
cord and nerve tissues