International Federation for Spina Bifida and hydrocephalous observes 25th October as the World Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Day dedicated to raise awareness, understand and encourage the rights of persons with these conditions.
Spina Bifida is a neural tube defect (from which our spinal cord is made in due course of development of the child in the womb). This may lead to paraparesis (weakness of the legs as lumbar spine is the most commonly affected site), sensory loss in the legs with loss of bowel and bladder control.
Hydrocephalous is another condition in children that results in accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain. This excessive constant pressure exerted on the brain may cause damage to the brain. This condition may precipitate with spina bifida or may an independent condition.
World Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Day was held for the first time in 2012 at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, supported by the WHO.
Go Folic campaign is also run by as a Joint venture between India Based Spina bifida foundation (SBF) and Meyer Vitabiotics, supported by the Raveena Tandon who happens to be the Brand ambassador for the same. Proper dietary intake of the folic acid in the mother-to-be can prove to be a major prophylaxis for Spina Bifida as highlighted by this campaign.
Though medical facilities are advancing, many children and adults living with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus still do not have access to the right treatment and care services and stigma and discrimination remain a reality in many countries. Early surgical management followed by intervention by the paramedicals is helpful in leading an independent life.