OU Health Opens First-in-State Multidisciplinary Adult Spina Bifida Clinic

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OU Health Opens First-in-State Multidisciplinary Adult Spina Bifida Clinic

OU Health has opened the first clinic of its kind in Oklahoma to offer centralized, multidisciplinary care for adult patients with spina bifida, easing the transition of children and young adults into age-appropriate care for the disease.

The adult spina bifida clinic will operate as a one-stop shop for patients, helping them manage symptoms associated with spina bifida while collaborating on individualized treatment plans. The multidisciplinary OU Health spina bifida team includes experts in the field of pediatric and adult neurosurgery, urology, primary care, physical therapy, physciatry and wound care.

Currently, adults with spina bifida in Oklahoma must visit multiple different locations to access the complex care they need. There are few providers nationally dedicated to the care of adults with spina bifida. Common spina bifida symptoms include hydrocephalus, spine and spinal cord issues, loss of balance or coordination and urinary issues. Accessing specialized care becomes especially important as pediatric spina bifida patients transition to adult treatment.

Each year approximately 1 in 2,500 babies are born with spina bifida in the U.S., and it is considered to be the most common type of neural tube defect. Living with spina bifida can be managed with proper care and treatment and having access to a multidisciplinary team with expertise in the condition. Today, about half of all patients with spina bifida in the U.S. are adults.

“Our medical and surgical care for babies and children with spina bifida has improved dramatically in the U.S., and many are going on to live well into adulthood. The medical community has focused on best-in-class multidisciplinary care for children with spina bifida. However, once they turn 18, many patients are left on their own without proper transition to adult providers or providers experienced with the complex care of spina bifida patients,” said Andrew Jea, M.D. pediatric neurosurgeon. “At OU Health, we are addressing this gap in team-based healthcare for adult patients with spina bifida.”

The adult spina bifida clinic provides care on a recurring monthly basis. Interested patients can call (405) 271-8888 to begin the referral process or ask any questions. Referrals can also be faxed to (405) 271-4921. The clinic is located at OU Health Physicians — Neurosurgery Clinic, 1000 N. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 4000, Oklahoma City, OK 73104.