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Year : 2000  |  Volume : 48  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 243--8

Cervical spinal cord injury without radiological abnormality in adults.


Department of Neurosurgery, Command Hospital (Central Command), Lucknow, 226002, India., India

Correspondence Address:
H S Bhatoe
Department of Neurosurgery, Command Hospital (Central Command), Lucknow, 226002, India.
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


PMID: 11025628

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Spinal cord injury occurring without concomitant radiologically demonstrable trauma to the skeletal elements of the spinal canal rim, or compromise of the spinal canal rim without fracture, is a rare event. Though documented in children, the injury is not very well reported in adults. We present seventeen adult patients with spinal cord injury without accompanying fracture of the spinal canal rim, or vertebral dislocation, seen over seven years. None had preexisting spinal canal stenosis or cervical spondylosis. Following trauma, these patients had weakness of all four limbs. They were evaluated by MRI (CT scan in one patient), which showed hypo / isointense lesion in the cord on T1 weighted images, and hyperintensity on T2 weighted images, suggesting cord contusion or oedema. MRI was normal in two patients. With conservative management, fifteen patients showed neurological improvement, one remained quadriplegic and one died. With increasing use of MRI in the evaluation of traumatic myelopathy, such injuries will be diagnosed more often. The mechanism of injury is probably acute stretching of the cord as in flexion and torsional strain. Management is essentially conservative and prognosis is better than that seen in patients with fracture or dislocation of cervical spine.






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Online since 20th March '04
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