Unprecedented case! Baby girl born with tail in Brazil due to rare spinal defect

Rare spinal defect

Rare spinal defect: A baby girl in Brazil was born with a tail, a rare phenomenon that can be associated with spinal cord defects. The unidentified girl was diagnosed with spina bifida, a birth defect in which a gap in the spine is formed. Doctors from a children’s hospital in Sao Paulo surgically removed the 6cm-long appendage, which was covered in skin and protruded from her back. Pictures of the remarkable case were published in the Journal of Pediatric Surgery Case Reports.

Spina bifida, the cause of a rare birth defect in a Brazilian baby girl

The tail was diagnosed as a “human pseudo-tail,” a growth that resembles a tail but is caused by spine problems or tumours. It is different from a tail, which contains muscle, blood vessels, and nerves but no bones. Researchers from the Centre for Fetal and Placental Research in Ohio studied the case alongside Brazilian doctors. The experts wrote in the report that surgery is essential to avoid complications such as pain, torsion, further growth, irritation, or breakdown.

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Stigma surrounding caudal appendages and the importance of early diagnosis and treatment

The case of the Brazilian baby girl demonstrates that human caudal appendages, or tails, are rare lesions that can impose an enormous stigma on their carriers and parents. Fetal caudal appendages are associated with spinal dysraphisms, such as spina bifida, and its presence therefore mandates careful screening for underlying spinal cord defects. Identifying the numerous possible associated anomalies is critical to plan the correct treatment and offer good quality counseling. Fortunately, the surgery to remove the tail went off without a hitch, and the patient was discharged from the hospital to live life unburdened by a tail.

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