Shriners Children's provides specialized care for children with cloacal exstrophy.
The goal of our colorectal and gastrointestinal specialty care is to provide children with anal-rectal disorders advanced care and rehabilitation that frees them from social stigma and allows them to live and play like other children.
What is Cloacal Exstrophy?
Cloacal exstrophy is a type of cloacal malformation. It's a birth defect in which a child is born with many of their digestive system structures, such as the large intestine and bladder, exposed. This conditions usually results in a second birth defect in which abdominal organs stick out of the navel as well.
How We Care for Cloacal Exstrophy
Cloacal exstrophy requires surgical repair. Shriners Children's pediatric surgeons and clinicians in the colorectal and gastrointestinal department have extensive experience in repairing cloacal malformations, including cloacal exstrophy.
Sometimes a child will undergo a series of surgeries over a number of years. We work together as a team to provide you and your child an individualized plan for reconstruction and future follow-up care. The exact situation and plan of each cloacal exstrophy surgery will depend on the severity of the condition. We can start planning interventions before your child is even born. In every case, our surgeons will work with you and your child to come up with an individualized care plan.
We provide follow-up care until the child becomes an adult to monitor your child’s health, prevent problems, manage symptoms and give your child the best quality of life.
Specific treatments and services may vary by location. Please contact a specific location for more information.
Understanding Your Child's Colorectal and Gastrointestinal (GI) Appointment(s)
On the first visit, parents and children typically come for a group overview and educational presentation about bowel management. Our doctors and nurses explain the medicines, enemas and diets we use as treatment options. Each family has a one-on-one clinic visit with a provider to make a plan for their child.
If referred to one of our locations for a more complex condition or surgery, you and your child go directly to the one-on-one visit with one of our providers to build an individualized plan of care.
Sometimes, when deemed appropriate, your child may have a bowel X-ray. This helps us with diagnoses and check whether your child’s plan is working. A nurse will talk with you to discuss your child’s results.
Our goal is for your child to empty their bowel daily with no accidents and to live with as few limitations as possible. Success depends on your child’s condition and following your plan closely.
How We Support Your Child’s Total Health and Well-Being
Families and patients say that Shriners Children’s feels like home to them, and it's no wonder to us. We know that a child's needs go beyond the physical. Our care teams support their social, emotional and developmental health with patient programs and activities.
A few examples include:
- Child life enrichment
- Creative arts
- Live entertainment
- Music therapy
- On-site public schooling
- Pet therapy
- School and community re-entry program
- Specialty camps
- Therapeutic recreation
Thanks to Shriners Children's, Wyatt has freedom and our family has room to take a deep breath because we know he is healthy.