Life Expectancy

Historically, a child born with a more serious form of spina bifida or more severe neural tube defect was expected to live a greatly abbreviated life. Today, however, increased education about spina bifida, emphasis on the importance of personal care, greater understanding of the accompanying health issues associated with the condition, as well as surgical advances have resulted in a much higher quality of life and greater life expectancy for persons with spina bifida. As many as 90 percent of persons born with spina bifida will survive into and possibly past their third decade of life. The current adult population living with spina bifida is reaching unprecedented levels of achievement.