Kummell's disease is a spinal disorder characterized by delayed post-traumatic collapse of a vertebral body with avascular necrosis. Although definitive treatment for Kummell's disease has not been established, it has been reported that percutaneous vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty has shown good results. However, these procedures are not recommended for severely collapsed vertebral bodies because of the risk of cement leakage or technical difficulties. Authors report a rare case of spontaneous reduction in vertebral height by the insertion of a working cannula into the vertebral body in Kummell's disease.
compression fracture; kyphoplasty; osteoporosis
Neurological deficits following epidural or spinal anesthesia are extremely rare. Transient paraplegia following epidural anesthesia in a patient with thoracic disc herniation has been presented. A 44-year-old woman developed paraplegia during the operation for vascular surgery of her legs under epidural anesthesia. Epidural hematoma or spinal cord ischemia was ruled out by magnetic resonance imaging of the thoracic and lumbar spine in which protruded disc at T11-12 level compressing the spinal cord has been verified. Patient responded well to steroid treatment and rehabilitation interventions. Physicians should be aware of preceding disc protrusions, which may have detrimental effects on spinal cord perfusion, as a cause of persistent or transient paraplegia before epidural anesthesia procedure. MRI is a valuable imaging option to rule out epidural anesthesia complications and coexisting pathologies like disc herniations.
Spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma is a relatively rare but potentially disabling disease. Prompt timely surgical management may promote recovery even in severe cases.
We report a 34-year-old man with a 2-hour history of sudden severe back pain, followed by weakness and numbness over the bilateral lower limbs, progressing to intense paraparesis and anesthesia. A spinal magnetic resonance imaging scan was performed and revealed an anterior epidural hematoma of the thoracic spine. He underwent an emergency decompression laminectomy of the thoracic spine and hematoma evacuation. Just after surgery, his lower extremity movements improved. After 1 week, there was no residual weakness and ambulation without assistance was resumed, with residual paresthesia on the plantar face of both feet. After 5 months, no residual symptoms persisted.
The diagnosis of spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma must be kept in mind in cases of sudden back pain with symptoms of spinal cord compression. Early recognition, accurate diagnosis and prompt surgical treatment may result in significant improvement even in severe cases.
Spinal epidural hematoma is a well known complication of spinal surgery. Clinically insignificant small epidural hematomas develop in most spinal surgeries following laminectomy. However, the incidence of clinically significant postoperative spinal epidural hematomas that result in neurological deficits is extremely rare. In this report, we present a 33-year-old female patient whose spinal surgery resulted in postoperative spinal epidural hematoma. She was diagnosed with lumbar disc disease and underwent hemipartial lumbar laminectomy and discectomy. After twelve hours postoperation, her neurologic status deteriorated and cauda equina syndrome with acute spinal epidural hematoma was identified. She was immediately treated with surgical decompression and evacuation of the hematoma. The incidence of epidural hematoma after spinal surgery is rare, but very serious complication. Spinal epidural hematomas can cause significant spinal cord and cauda equina compression, requiring surgical intervention. Once diagnosed, the patient should immediately undergo emergency surgical exploration and evacuation of the hematoma.
We are the first to report a case that showed spontaneous resolution of epidural hematoma which was related to a steroid-induced osteoporotic compression fracture. The patient had a painful fracture with an intravertebral cleft at L1 accompanying an epidural hematoma posteriorly. Immediate pain relief was achieved after percutaneous vertebroplasty. Complete resolution of hematoma was noted three months after procedure. We theorized that intravertebral stability after treatment might have played a role in this patient.
Vertebroplasty; Osteoporosis; Epidural hematoma; Spinal canal compromise; Intravertebral cleft
We present a rare case of delayed onset of epidural hematoma after lumbar surgery whose only presenting symptom was vesicorectal disturbance. A 68-year-old man with degenerative spinal stenosis underwent lumbar decompression and instrumented posterolateral spine fusion. The day after his discharge following an unremarkable postoperative course, he presented to the emergency room complaining of difficulty in urination. An MRI revealed an epidural fluid collection causing compression of the thecal sac. The fluid was evacuated, revealing a postoperative hematoma. After removal of the hematoma, his symptoms disappeared immediately, and his urinary function completely recovered. Most reports have characterized postoperative epidural hematoma as occurring early after operation and accompanied with neurological deficits. But it can happen even two weeks after spinal surgery with no pain. Surgeons thus may need to follow up patients for at least a few weeks because some complications, such as epidural hematomas, could take that long to manifest themselves.
Intervertebral disk herniation is relatively common. Migration usually occurs in the ventral epidural space; rarely, disks migrate to the dorsal epidural space due to the natural anatomical barriers of the thecal sac.
A 49-year-old man presented with 1 week of severe back pain with bilateral radiculopathy to the lateral aspect of his lower extremities and weakness of the ankle dorsiflexors and toe extensors. Lumbar spine magnetic resonance imaging with gadolinium revealed a peripheral enhancing dorsal epidural lesion with severe compression of the thecal sac. Initial differential diagnosis included spontaneous hematoma, synovial cyst, and epidural abscess. Posterior lumbar decompression was performed; intraoperatively, the lesion was identified as a large herniated disk fragment.
Dorsal migration of a herniated intervertebral disk is rare and may be difficult to definitively diagnose preoperatively. Dorsal disk migration may present in a variety of clinical scenarios and, as in this case, may mimic other epidural lesions on magnetic resonance imaging.
Vertebral disk, herniation; Back pain, radiculopathy; Abscess, epidural; Hematoma, epidural; Laminectomy; Decompression, lumbar
Kummell disease, or avascular necrosis of a vertebral body, presents as vertebral osteonecrosis typically affecting a thoracic vertebra with compression deformity, intravertebral vacuum cleft, and exaggerated kyphosis weeks to months after a minor traumatic injury. This rare disease is increasing in prevalence secondary to an aging population and the associated rise in osteoporosis. Treatment with vertebroplasty or surgical decompression and fusion is often required. We present a classic case of Kummell disease to illustrate the salient features of the condition, with associated imaging findings on computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging.
There are few reported cases of post-operative spondylitis caused by Mycobacterium intracellulare. A 75-year-old female presented to our hospital with low back pain and paraparesis after a fall. The radiologic examination revealed compression fractures of L1, L3 and L4 and an epidural hematoma compressing the spinal cord. The dark-red epidural hematoma was urgently evacuated. Four weeks post-operatively, neurologic deficits recurred with fever. On magnetic resonance image, an epidural abscess and osteomyelitis were detected in the previous operative site. Five weeks post-operatively, revision was performed with multiple biopsies. The specimen were positive for acid-fast bacilli and traditional anti-tuberculous medications were started. Because the Polymerase Chain Reaction for non-tuberculous mycobacterium (NTM) was positive, the anti-tuberculous medications were changed to anti-NTM drugs. However, the neurologic deficits did not improve and persistent elevation of erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein were noted. Eight weeks after the revision, Mycobacterium intracellulare was detected in the specimen cultures. Despite supportive care with medication, the patient died due to multiple organ failure.
Post-operative spondylitis; Mycobacterium intracellulare
A 67-year-old man with degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis and a medical history significant for coronary artery disease underwent routine lumbar surgical decompression. The objective of this study was to report a case of postoperative epidural hematoma associated with the use of emergent anticoagulation, including the dangers associated with spinal decompression and early postoperative anticoagulation.
After anticoagulation therapy for postoperative myocardial ischemia, the patient developed paresis with ascending abdominal paraesthesias. Immediate decompression of the surgical wound was carried out at the bedside. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a massive spinal epidural hematoma extending from the middle of the cervical spine to the sacrum. Emergent cervical, thoracic, and revision lumbar laminectomy without fusion was performed to decompress the spinal canal and evacuate the hematoma.
Motor and sensory function returned to normal by 14 days postoperatively, but bowel and bladder function continued to be impaired. Postoperative radiographs showed that coronal and sagittal spinal alignment did not change significantly after extensive laminectomy.
Full anticoagulation should be avoided in the early postoperative period. In cases requiring early vigorous anticoagulation, patients should be closely monitored for changes in neurologic status. Combined cervical, thoracic, and lumbar laminectomy, without instrumentation or fusion, is an acceptable treatment option.
Spinal stenosis, lumbar; Spinal decompression; Anticoagulation; Epidural hematoma; Laminectomy
Spinal epidural hematoma (SEH) represents the most frequent entity of acute or chronic spinal bleeding. Based upon pathogenesis, SEH can be classified as idiopathic, spontaneous, and secondary. The idiopathic forms are considered not to be attributed to any specific risk factors. Spontaneous SEH, accounting for 0.3–0.9% of all spinal epidural space occupying lesions, instead is associated with risk factors (such as substantial soft trauma or coagulation abnormalities). The chronic form, as our literature review revealed, is the rarest and its most frequent location is the lumbar spine. The pathophysiology of spontaneous and idiopathic SEH is still under debate: There are only a few reports in literature of chronically evolving SEH with progressively increasing pain and neurological impairment. Magnetic resonance imaging may be inconclusive for differential diagnosis. Here, we present two cases of lumbar chronic SEH with slow, progressive, and persistent lumbar radicular impairment. The first patient reported a minor trauma with slight back contusion and thus was classified as spontaneous SEH. In the second case not even a minor trauma was involved, so we considered it to be idiopathic SEH. In both cases preoperative blood and coagulation tests were normal and we did not find any other or co-factors in the patients’ clinical histories. MR imaging showed uncertain spinal canal obstructing lesions at L3 and L4 level in both cases. Surgical treatment allowed a correct diagnosis and resulted in full clinical and neuroradiological recovery after 1 year follow-up. Our aim is to discuss pathogenesis, clinical and radiological features, differential diagnosis and treatment options, on the background of relevant literature review.
Spontaneous; Idiopathic; Chronic; Hematoma; Epidural; Spinal
Symptomatic spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma(SSEH) is an uncommon cause of cord compression that commonly is considered as an indication for emergent surgical decompression. We aimed to investigate a patient with a SSEH that completely resolved clinically and radiographically, without surgical treatment. The patient presented three days after the sudden onset of back pain, numbness, and weakness. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) revealed a posterior thoracolumbar epidural hematoma extending from the level of T10 to L2 with significant cord compression. Decompression was recommended but he refused surgery and was managed conservatively. One month later, weakness totally recovered and hematoma was absent on MRI.
Spinal epidural hematoma; Cord compression; Conservative therapy
Symptomatic spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma(SSEH) is an uncommon cause of cord compression that commonly is considered an indication for emergent surgical decompression. We aimed to investigate a patient with a SSEH that completely resolved clinically and radiographically, without surgical treatment. The patient presented three days after the sudden onset of back pain, numbness, and weakness. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) revealed a posterior thoracolumbar epidural hematoma extending from the level of T10 to L2 with significant cord compression. Decompression was recommended but he refused surgery and was managed conservatively. One month later weakness totally recovered and hematoma was absent on MRI.
Spinal epidural hematoma; Cord compression; Conservative therapy
Spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH), typically presents with orthostatic headache, low pressure on lumbar tapping, and diffuse pachymeningeal enhancement on magnetic resonance imaging. SIH is often accompanied by subdural fluid collections, which in most cases responds to conservative treatment or spinal epidural blood patch. Several authors advocate that large subdural hematoma with acute deterioration merits surgical drainage; however, few have reported complications following craniotomy. We describe a complicated case of SIH, which was initially diagnosed as acute subarachnoid hemorrhage with bilateral chronic subdural hematoma (SDH), due to unusual presentation. Burr hole drainage of subdural hematoma was performed due to progressive decrease of consciousness, which then resulted in a huge postoperative epidural hematoma collection. Prompt hematoma evacuation did not restore the patient's consciousness but aggravated downward brain herniation. Trendelenburg position and spinal epidural blood patch achieved a rapid improvement in patient's consciousness. This case indicates that the surgical drainage for chronic SDH in SIH can lead to serious complications and it should be cautiously considered.
Chronic subdural hematoma; craniotomy; spontaneous intracranial hypotension; subarachnoid hemorrhage
Many studies have reported spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma (SSEH). Although most cases are idiopathic, several are associated with thrombolytic therapy or anticoagulants. We report a case of SSEH coincident with acute myocardial infarction (AMI), which caused serious neurological deficits. A 56 year old man presented with chest pain accompanied with back and neck pain, which was regarded as an atypical symptom of AMI. He was treated with nitroglycerin, aspirin, low molecular weight heparin, and clopidogrel. A spinal magnetic resonance image taken after paraplegia developed 3 days after the initial symptoms revealed an epidural hematoma at the cervical and thoracolumbar spine. Despite emergent decompressive surgery, paraplegia has not improved 7 months after surgery. A SSEH should be considered when patients complain of abrupt, strong, and non-traumatic back and neck pain, particularly if they have no spinal pain history.
Acute myocardial infarction; Hematoma, epidural, spinal; Paraplegia; Thrombolytic therapy; Anticoagulants
Delayed post-traumatic osteonecrosis, also known by its eponym Kummell’s disease, is a rarely reported clinical entity that likely occurs with higher frequency than recognized. We highlight a case of a 75-year-old female household ambulator who presented with significant thoracolumbar pain and delayed T12 collapse after a ground-level fall. The patient had sustained a trivial fall at home 4 months prior to this presentation and had been hospitalized in our institution at that time for a general medical workup. Dedicated spine radiographs were not obtained during this visit. However, lateral chest radiograph demonstrated an intact T12 vertebral body. The patient was able to mobilize successfully with therapy and was discharged home. During the interim between the initial fall and subsequent presentation, she resumed physical activity including ambulating independently and performing various housework. Approximately 4 months following her initial injury, the patient returned to a local emergency department with vague complaints of abdominal pain without any history of recent fall or injury. After an unremarkable workup, the patient was sent home. Ten days later, she represented to our institution’s emergency room with worsening pain. Radiographs and CT scan demonstrated interval collapse of the T12 vertebral body. A linear vacuum cleft was noted on X-rays and CT. An extensive workup to exclude other processes such as malignancy or infection, which was negative, ensued. Delayed post-traumatic vertebral collapse was diagnosed. A trial of medical management and therapy was attempted, but she continued to experience significant pain. A T12 vertebroplasty was therefore offered and performed to stabilize the injury and to relieve the pain. She was subsequently able to be discharged from the hospital and transitioned back to home life. At approximately 2 years following her injury, the patient was noted to be able to ambulate with a walking aid. Her final radiograph after her surgery demonstrated that the T12 vertebroplasty had maintained its height and sagittal alignment. This Grand Round case highlights the clinical presentation of Kummell’s disease. Aspects of the clinical entity that will be discussed include a historical review of the disease, hallmark radiographic findings and treatment options.
Kummell’s disease; Delayed vertebral osteonecrosis; Vertebral collapse; Vertebral pseudoarthrosis
Lumbar epidural varices are rare and usually mimick lumbar disc herniations. Back pain and radiculopathy are the main symptoms of lumbar epidural varices. Perineural cysts are radiologically different lesions and should not be confused with epidural varix. A 36-year-old male patient presented to us with right leg pain. The magnetic resonance imaging revealed a cystic lesion at S1 level that was compressing the right root, and was interpreted as a perineural cyst. The patient underwent surgery via right L5 and S1 hemilaminectomy, and the lesion was coagulated and removed. The histopathological diagnosis was epidural varix. The patient was clinically improved and the follow-up magnetic resonance imaging showed the absence of the lesion. Lumbar epidural varix should be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis of the cystic lesions which compress the spinal roots.
Epidural; Varix; Perineural cyst; Surgery
Spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma (SSEH) is a rare idiopathic condition that leads to acute onset of neurological deficits, which if not recognized early can have catastrophic consequences. The definition and pathophysiology of this condition remain controversial. High index of suspicion followed by T2-weighted gradient echo sequences are particularly useful in early diagnosis. Management consists of prompt surgical decompression of the hematoma though a recent trend is toward non-surgical treatment.
A 70-year-old man presented with acute onset neck pain with a radicular component and rapidly progressive quadriparesis. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a posteriorly located cervical extradural hematoma with cord compression that was promptly evacuated. Functional recovery to near normal function occurred within 24 hours of surgery.
SSEH in its true idiopathic form is a rare pathologic entity. Because of the high risk of poor outcome without treatment, SSEH should be a diagnostic possibility when presentation is even slightly suggestive. Prompt surgical evacuation of the hematoma leads to a favorable neurological outcome, whereas delay in treatment can be disastrous. The role of conservative management needs to be proven and should be tailored on an individual basis.
Tetraparesis; Tetraplegia; Paralysis; Myelopathy; Laminectomy; Neurologic manifestations; Progressive; Spinal cord compression; Cervical; Hematoma; Idiopathic spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma
We describe a case of 36-year-old man who presented with a subacute headache preceded by a 1-month history of posterior neck pain without trauma history. Head and neck magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies disclosed bilateral supratentorial subdural and retroclival extradural hematomas associated with marked cervical epidural venous engorgement. Cerebral and spinal angiography disclosed no abnormalities except dilated cervical epidural veins. We performed serial follow-up MRI studied to monitor his condition. Patient's symptoms improved gradually. Serial radiologic studies revealed gradual resolution of pathologic findings. A 3-month follow-up MRI study of the brain and cervical spine revealed complete resolution of the retroclival extradural hematoma, disappearance of the cervical epidural venous engorgement, and partial resolution of the bilateral supratentorial subdural hematoma. Complete resolution of the bilateral supratentorial subdural hematoma was confirmed on a 5-month follow-up brain MRI. The diagnosis and possible mechanisms of this rare association are discussed.
Supratentorial subdural hematoma; Retroclival extradural hematoma; Cervical epidural venous engorgement
Spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma (SSEH) during pregnancy is rare and may result in permanent damage if not promptly treated. There were few studies discussing the etiology, presentation and treatment of SSEH during pregnancy. The authors describe a case of spontaneous cervical epidural hematoma during pregnancy, which was diagnosed by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and managed with surgical evacuation. A retrospective review of a case of spontaneous epidural hematoma of spine during pregnancy was performed. The clinical features, diagnoses, treatments and outcomes of all cases were analyzed. Precise diagnosis without delay and rapid surgical treatment are essential for the management of SSEH during pregnancy.
Epidural hematoma; Spine; Spontaneous; Pregnancy
We report an extremely rare case of traumatic cervical spinal subdural hematoma not related to intracranial injury. There has been no report on traumatic cervical spinal subdrual hematoma not related to intracranial injury. A 27-year-old female patient was admitted to our emergency room due to severe neck pain and right arm motor weakness after car collision. On admission, she presented with complete monoplegia and hypoesthesia of right arm. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed subdural hematoma compressing spinal cord. Lumbar cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis revealed 210,000 red blood cells/mm3. She was managed conservatively by administrations of steroid pulse therapy and CSF drainage. Her muscle power of right arm improved to a Grade III 16 days after admission. Follow-up MRI taken 16th days after admission revealed almost complete resolution of the hematoma. Here, the authors report a traumatic cervical spinal SDH not associated with intracranial injury.
Spinal subdural hematoma; Cervical spine; Monoplegia
Multiple myeloma is a fatal hematological malignancy, with the most common localization being the spine. A 72-year-old male patient presented with progressive back pain and dysfunction of ambulation. Spinal computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed spinal cord compression at the T9-T10 level due to an extensive epidural mass in the spinal canal, a large lytic mass of T7-T12 with extraosseous extension and involvement of T9 and T10 vertebral pedicle and posterior wall. The patient underwent posterior spinal decompression and kyphoplasty of T9 and T10 with pedicle screw fixation in T7, T8, T11 and T12. Pain and neural function were improved significantly postoperatively. To our knowledge, such methods have rarely been used to treat a patient with intractable back pain and neurological compromise with multiple myeloma or spinal metastases.
spinal cord compression; vertebral lytic lesion; kyphoplasty; pedicle screw fixation
Spinal angiolipomas are extremely rare benign tumors composed of mature lipomatous and angiomatous elements. Most are symptomatic due to progressive spinal cord or root compression. This article describes the case of a 60-year-old woman who presented with a 6-month history of low back pain radiating to her right leg. The pain was multisegmental. The condition had worsened with time. Lumbar magnetic resonance imaging revealed a dorsal epidural mass at L5 and erosion of the lamina of the L5 vertebra. Laminectomy was performed, and an extradural tumor was totally excised. Neuropathologic examination identified it as a lumbar spinal angiolipoma. There was no evidence of recurrence in follow-up 12 months later. This rare clinical entity must be considered in the differential diagnosis for any spinal epidural lesion.
Angiolipoma; Spinal tumor
Spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma is an uncommon cause of cord compression in children, especially in infants. An 8-month-old infant was admitted to our hospital for a 40-day history of paraparesis in the lower extremities. This rapidly progressed to paraparesis with an inability to move the lower extremities. MRI of the cervicothoracic spine revealed an epidural mass with compression of the spinal cord. The infant underwent C7-T3 total laminectomies. The pathology and postoperative MRI confirmed spinal epidural hematoma from a vascular malformation. We present the case to highlight the significance of recognizing this chronic spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma and discuss the diagnosis, treatment options and prognosis.
Spinal hematoma is a rare and usually severe neurological disorder that, without adequate treatment, often leads to death or permanent neurological deficit. Epidural as well as subdural and subarachnoid hematomas have been investigated in some studies. A 66-year-old man referred to our hospital because of acute onset paraplegia and incontinency started 3 h before admission. With impression of spinal hemorrhage, emergent cervicothoracic spinal MRI performed. On magnetic resonance imagination (MRI) mixed hyper/iso intense lesion in anterior subarachnoid space from C7 to T5 was seen. On brain A computerised tomography (CT) scan, subarachnoid hemorrhage and intraventricular hemorrhage in posterior parts of brain was seen. Unfortunately, the patient died 10 days later. About our patient, severe back pain accompanying by immediate paraplegia, sphincter disturbances, sensory level, and prominent meningeal signs guided us clinically to spinal subarachnoid hemorrhage. Further brain CT scan revealed diffusion of blood to brain subarachnoid space and ventricles. An outstanding finding on brain CT was the presence of blood only in posterior horn of lateral ventricles and dorsal fissures of brain supporting our theory that blood has diffused from spinal subarachnoid space to dorsal subarachnoid space of brain because of supine position of patient. In this patient anticoagulation may be the only sinister factor for developing complications.
Anticoagulants; spinal subarachnoid hemorrhage; spinal subdural hematoma; tomography; X-ray computed