The occurrance of a spina bifida without other deformity has been placed (Wernitz) at one in every thousand births. This makes this error of development a conspicuous object of therapy, not only on account of the interest of the parents, but from the quantitative value of the patients. Up to the present time, very poor results have followed except where the boney defect happened to be small. The obliteration of the meningocele has too often been followed by a return of the tumor. This return is due to the stretching and giving way of the muscular and connective-tissue covering of the cord, and these returns give the indication for successful treatment.
The treatment of defects in the spinal arch by an osteoplastic operation was proposed in 1885 and successfully carried out in one case by Dollinger. He divided and brought together the rudiments of the spinal arches in the lumbo-sacral
OSTEOPLASTIC THERAPY OF SPINA BIFIDA.. JAMA. 1892;XIX(3):87-88. doi:10.1001/jama.1892.02420030029008