Plasma antidiuretic hormone levels in children with spina bifida

Pietro Ferrara, Carmen D'aleo, Antonio Ruggiero, Fabrizia Paolini Paoletti, Maria Laura Chiozza, Mario Plebani, Paolo Caione, Roberto Del Gado, Elio Salvaggio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Urological management of spina bifida patients is controversial. The goals of therapy of neurogenic bladder are continence, prevention of infections and preservation of urinary tract. Desmopressin has been recently used in a spina bifida population that is dry during the day (daytime continence was achieved with clean intermittent catheterization and anticholinergics) but wet at night. The aim of this study was to assess plasma antidiuretic hormone (ADH) levels in these children. Materials and Methods: The study included 24 patients, 11 males and 13 females (mean age 6.4 years) referred to the Spina Bifida Centre of the Catholic University of Rome, and 57 normal age-matched controls. Morning (07.30-08.00 h) plasma ADH levels were measured using a specific radioimmunoassay. Results: Plasma ADH levels (normal range 5-11 μg/l) did not differ between spina bifida population and healthy controls. Serum ADH had a mean of 6.8 μg/l in affected children and a mean of 7.4 μg/l in the controls. Conclusion: We conclude that the use of desmopressin in children with spina bifida should be reserved only in patients with decreased secretion of ADH, or may be useful in patients with persistent nocturnal incontinence to reduce night wetting. Therefore, research with a larger population is needed. Copyright

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-147
Number of pages4
JournalUrologia Internationalis
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • Antidiuretic hormone
  • Incontinence
  • Myelomeningocele

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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