Intervening factors in the walking of children presenting myelomeningocele

Dirce Shizuko Fujisawa, Marcia Larissa Cavallari da Costa Gois, Josilainne Marcelino Dias, Egle de Oliveira Netto Moreira Alves, Marcelo de Souza Tavares, Jefferson Rosa Cardoso


Introduction: All children presenting myelomeningocele are capable of walking. Certain interventionscan influence the walking prognosis of these children: physical therapy, medication, and nutritional orientation.Objectives: The aim of this study was to verify the association between ability to walk in childrenwith myelomeningocele and clinical, socioeconomic and therapeutic factors. Method: This cross-sectionalstudy was conducted at the University Hospital. The participants were children aged two years-old ormore, diagnosed with myelomeningocele. Data collection was conducted by physical therapy assessmentand medical records. The dependent variable was walking and the independent variables were clinical,socioeconomic and therapeutic factors. Results: Forty-one children were evaluated, with a median age of5 years-old (2-9). The clinical factors that revealed an association with walking were neurological area (p < 0,0001) and fractures (p = 0,022). Socioeconomic factors showed not to be significant in relation to ability towalk. Surgery (p = 0,017) and the use of assistive devices (p = 0,023) were also associated with the ability towalk. Conclusion: The determinant clinical factor for walking prognosis was the neurological area. The useof assistive devices and surgical intervention were shown to be necessary for promoting walking activity.

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