In a consecutive series of 200 neonates having undergone surgery for open myelomeningocele, 24 of the 106 survivors at 10 to 12 years of age proved to be continent of urine. These figures included 11 children who had considerable neurological involvement. 4 children did not acquire urinary control until after the age of 5 years. Therefore, we consider early urinary diversion in children with myelomeningocele, even in the presence of neurological deficit, to be indicated only for the prevention of progressive deterioration in renal function. Incontinence of urine itself is not an indication for urinary diversion in the first decade of life.
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