Navi Mumbai: For more than 20 years, Vashi resident Ruth Murzello (41) suffered from stiffness in lower back and pain in her legs. She was born with a swelling in her lower back and was diagnosed with a split spine, medically known as spina bifida. At eight months, she was operated upon but as she grew up, she started complaining of backache, tightening of the muscles in her legs and eventually lost control over her bladder and bowel.
Dr Ashok Hande, neurosurgeon at Fortis, Vashi, told her that her spine lay very low in the canal. Also, there was a large mass of a fatty tissue attached to the lower end of the spinal cord. This was a neurological disorder caused by tissue attachments that limit the movement of the spinal cord within the spinal canal. “It happens when a baby is in the womb and the spinal column does not close all the way,” he said.
During the operation, the fatty tissue was excised partially and the spinal cord was freed from its attachment to the surrounding tissues.
Ruth, who is a caterer by profession, said, except for the soreness in the operated area, all other symptoms have vanished. While full recovery may take a month, Ruth said, she is now able to do everyday tasks that until recently was impossiible.