The study by Houtrow et al1 is an eagerly awaited new chapter of an intriguing story that began almost 70 years ago.
In 1956, Cameron published a Lancet article to describe allegedly secondary tissue damage of the openly exposed spinal cord tissue of fetuses and newborn babies with spina bifida (SB) aperta (ie, myelomeningocele or myeloschisis).2 The lesion was characterized by neural tissue damage that was apparently acquired in utero or during birth. This observation did not yet elicit in-depth interpretations regarding the prenatal natural history of SB and possible therapeutic implications.
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Meuli M, Moehrlen U. Long-term Outcomes of Children After Fetal Surgery for Spina Bifida—Toward Sustainability. JAMA Pediatr. 2021;175(4):e205687. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2020.5687
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