Four patients underwent lumbar surgery. In all four patients, the dura was minimally torn during the operation. However, none exhibited signs of postoperative cerebrospinal fluid leakage. In each case, a few days after the operation, the patient suddenly experienced severe recurring pain in the leg. Repeat magnetic resonance imaging showed transdural nerve rootlets entrapped in the intervertebral disc space. On exploration, ventral dural tears and transdural nerve rootlet entrapment were confirmed. Midline durotomy, herniated rootlet repositioning, and ventral dural tear repair were performed, and patients' symptoms improved after rootlet repositioning. Even with minimal dural tearing, nerve rootlets may become entrapped, resulting in severe recurring symptoms. Therefore, the dural tear must be identified and repaired during the first operation.
Nerve rootlet entrapment; Lumbar disc herniation; Laminectomy; Discectomy; Dura tear; Dura repair
Idiopathic spinal cord herniation is a rare but potentially treatable cause of thoracic myelopathy. The rarity and variable clinical presentation often results in missed diagnosis and delay in treatment. Posterior midline approach with laminectomy has been the most common approach performed for spinal cord herniation in cases described in the literature. A posterior approach is limited by the danger of retracting the spinal cord and difficulty visualizing the dural defect. Considering the anterior location of the dural defect, a posterolateral allows for a more ventral view without spinal cord manipulation. We report a rare case of idiopathic spinal cord herniation which was managed by unilateral paramedian transpedicular approach with an excellent clinical outcome.
Spinal cord herniation; Surgery; Management; Thoracic spine
The optimal surgical approach for thoracic disc herniation remains a matter of debate, especially for central disc herniation. In this paper, we present a new technique to remove central thoracic disc herniation, the posterior transdural approach, and report a series of 13 cases operated on in this way at our institute.
Between September 2004 and October 2010, 13 patients with symptomatic central thoracic disc herniation were operated on, utilising this posterior transdural approach. All patients underwent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the thoracic spine before surgery. All patients were followed at our outpatient department for at least 3 months. In addition, all patients were interviewed in April 2009 and February 2011 to evaluate the final results. A seven-point Likert scale was applied and the Frankel score was determined preoperatively and postoperatively. Additionally, a postoperative MRI was obtained for all but two patients.
The most frequently involved levels were T10–11 and T12–L1. Median operative time was 210 min (range 140–360). Three patients experienced reversible complications. No patient required spinal fixation. The median duration of hospitalisation was 6 days (range 4–20 days). With a median follow-up of 18 months, symptoms improved in 12 patients (92%), including the three patients with complications. One patient was unchanged (8%), while none of the patients experienced worsening of symptoms.
The posterior transdural approach is well tolerated by the patient and has a relatively high success rate. It is a relatively simple and safe procedure, suitable for the operative treatment of almost all types of thoracic disc herniation, but especially the centrally located disc herniation.
Thoracic disc herniation; Posterior approaches; Transdural
Intradural extra-arachnoid lumbar disc herniation is a rare disease. Few MRI findings have been reported. We experienced an intradural extra-arachnoid lumbar disc herniation. We reviewed the preoperative MRI findings. Lumbar spine T2-weighted sagittal MRI showed that one line of the ventral dura was divided into two by a disc herniation. We speculated that the two lines comprised the dura and arachnoid and that a disc herniation existed between them. We believe that division of the ventral dural line on T2-weighted sagittal images is a characteristic finding of intradural extra-arachnoid lumbar disc herniation. The division of ventral dural line seemed to be a “Y,” and, thus, we called it the “Y sign.” The “Y sign” may be useful for diagnosing intradural extra-arachnoid lumbar disc herniation.
Idiopathic spinal cord herniation (ISCH) is a rare cause of progressive myelopathy frequently present in Brown-Séquard syndrome. Preoperative diagnosis can be made with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Many surgical techniques have been applied by various authors and are usually reversible by surgical treatment.
Case report and review of the literature.
A 45-year-old woman with Brown-Séquard syndrome underwent thoracic MRI, which revealed transdural spinal cord herniation at T8 vertebral body level. During surgery the spinal cord was reduced and the ventral dural defect was restorated primarily and reinforced with a thin layer of subdermal fat. The dural defect was then closed with interrupted stitches.
Although neurologic status improved postoperatively, postsurgical MRI demonstrated swelling and abnormal T2-signal intensity in the reduced spinal cord. Review of the English language literature revealed 100 ISCH cases.
ISCH is a rare clinical entity that should be considered in differential diagnosis of Brown-Séquard syndrome, especially among women in their fifth decade of life. Outcome for patients who initially had Brown-Séquard syndrome was significantly better than for patients who presented with spastic paralysis. Although progression of neurologic deficits can be very slow, reduction of the spinal cord and repair of the defect are crucial in stopping or reversing the deterioration.
Brown-Séquard syndrome; Myelopathy; Spinal cord herniation, Dural defect; Spasticity; Duraplasty; Pseudomeningocele
The authors retrospectively reviewed a series of 18 hard thoracic herniated discs (HTHD) operated by thoracoscopy. Isolated cases of HTHD have been reported in the literature, but no series describing these lesions has been published. Seventy-two percent of the herniated discs were situated between T8 and T12. Fifty-six percent of the patients had radiographic sequelae of Scheuermann’s disease. Postoperatively, 83% had neurological improvement. In seven cases (39%), a plane separating the herniated disc and the dura mater was found surgically. In 11 patients, no separating plane was found during surgery. The lesion was intradural in three patients (17%) and adherent to the dura mater in eight (44%). Among these 11 patients, surgery was complicated by a dural tear in the first seven that led to a high risk of cerebrospinal fluid fistula: four of these seven patients had required surgical revision. In the last four, the zone of adhesion of the HTHD to the dura mater was preserved, successfully preventing dural tear
Calcified thoracic disc herniation; MRI; Scheuermann; Thoracic spine; Thoracoscopy
A 73-year-old male presented with a rare dorsally sequestrated lumbar disc herniation manifesting as severe radiating pain in both leg, progressively worsening weakness in both lower extremities, and urinary incontinence, suggesting cauda equina syndrome. Magnetic resonance imaging suggested the sequestrated disc fragment located in the extradural space at the L4-L5 level had surrounded and compressed the dural sac from the lateral to dorsal sides. A bilateral decompressive laminectomy was performed under an operating microscope. A large extruded disc was found to have migrated from the ventral aspect, around the thecal sac, and into the dorsal aspect, which compressed the sac to the right. After removal of the disc fragment, his sciatica was relieved and the patient felt strength of lower extremity improved.
Lumbar disc herniation; Dorsal; Intradural; Migrated
Large lumbosacral disc herniations effacing both the paramedian and the foraminal area often cause double radicular compression. Surgical management of these lesions may be difficult. A traditional interlaminar approach usually brings into view only the paramedian portion of the intervertebral disc, unless the lateral bone removal is considerably increased. Conversely, the numerous far-lateral approaches proposed for removing foraminal or extraforaminal disc herniations would decompress the exiting nerve root only. Overall, these approaches share the drawback of controlling the neuroforamen on one side alone. A combined intra-extraforaminal exposure is a useful yet rarely reported approach. Over a 3-year period, 15 patients with bi-radicular symptoms due to large disc herniations of the lumbar spine underwent surgery through a combined intra-extracanal approach. A standard medial exposure with an almost complete hemilaminectomy of the upper vertebra was combined with an extraforaminal exposure, achieved by minimal drilling of the inferior facet joint, the lateral border of the pars interarticularis and the inferior margin of the superior transverse process. The herniated discs were removed using key maneuvers made feasible by working simultaneously on both operative windows. In all cases the disc herniation could be completely removed, thus decompressing both nerve roots. Radicular pain was fully relieved without procedure-related morbidity. The intra-extraforaminal exposure was particularly useful in identifying the extraforaminal nerve root early. Early identification was especially advantageous when periradicular scar tissue hid the nerve root from view, as it did in patients who had undergone previous surgery at the same site or had long-standing radicular symptoms. Controlling the foramen on both sides also reduced the risk of leaving residual disc fragments. A curved probe was used to push the disc material outside the foramen. In conclusion, specific surgical maneuvers made feasible by a simultaneous extraspinal and intraspinal exposure allow quick, safe and complete removal of lumbosacral disc herniations with paramedian and foraminal extension.
Combined approach; Disc herniation; Foraminal; Lumbar
Background: Spondylodiscitis is a known and serious complication of spinal surgery. A rare case of a late and remote thoracis spondrylitis due to methicillin resestant staphylococcus aureus following cervical surgery is presented.
Case report: A 50 year-old-male was treated for cervical degenerative disease via a combined anterior and posterior cervical approach (discectomy with fusion and laminectomy). Three years later a cervical epidural abscess was formed which wad treated successfully conservatively. After 18 months he developed spondylitis of the second thoracic vertebra. The patient was further treated surgically via a dorsolateral extracavitary thoracic approach. Laboratory analysis revealed Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) spondylitis sensitive to linezolid. Inflammation markers declined and clinical symptoms ameliorated. At 12-month follow-up the patient did not show any evidence of recurrence of the infection.
Conclusions: A high rate of suspicion must be maintained in patients presenting with signs of spinal infection and neurological impairment even many years after the initial operation. Optimal investigation and outcome require close clinical monitoring and a well coordinated multidisciplinary approach.
spine surgery; myelopathy; spondylitis; infection; abscess; methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
Meningiomas of the spine occur in the thoracic spine in approximately 80%, followed in frequency by the cervical and lumbar regions. The treatment of spinal meningiomas is complete surgical resection. As intraspinal meningiomas are almost always adherent to the dura, extensive dural resection or diathermic treatment of the dural attachment is usually performed to prevent tumor recurrence. The authors present the case of lumbar spinal meningioma in 82-year-old woman. Successful resection with preservation of the dura mater using the technique of Saito et al. (Spine 26:1805-1808, 2001) is described: After lumbar laminectomy a small incision was made in the surface of the spinal dura. The dura mater was separated into its inner and outer layers, and the tumor was resected with inner layer alone, preserving the outer layer. The outer layer is simply closed to achieve a watertight seal. The pathologic diagnosis was metaplastic (osseous) meningioma. Almost full recovery of the neurologic deficit was attained. Neither complication nor tumor recurrence has occurred in the 5 years since surgery. Dural preservation during surgical resection of spinal meningioma obviates the need for dural reconstruction and should reduce surgical morbidity. However, the patient should be followed long-term to watch for recurrence.
Dural preservation; Elderly; Lumbar spinal meningioma; Minimally invasive; Surgical treatment
Symptomatic thoracic disc herniation is an uncommon condition and early surgical approaches were associated with significant morbidity and even mortality. We are the first to describe the technique of percutaneous thoracic nucleoplasty in three patients with severe radicular pain due to thoracic disc herniation. Two of the patients experienced more than 75% pain relief and one patient experienced more than 50% pain relief. Post-procedural pain relief was maintained up to an average of 10 months after nucleoplasty. One patient with preoperative neurological signs improved postoperatively. There were no reported complications in all three patients. In view of the reduced morbidity and shorter operating time, thoracic intervertebral disc nucleoplasty can be considered in patients with pain due to thoracic disc herniation, with no calcification of the herniated disc, and in patients who may be otherwise be unfit for conventional surgery.
Thoracic intervertebral disc herniation; Thoracic nucleoplasty; Percutaneous thoracic disc cannulation; Minimally invasive procedures
To report a case of Cauda Equina syndrome with the completion of the paralysis after the reduction of a L4L5 dislocation due to a herniated disc. Although several articles have described a post-traumatic disc herniation in the cervical spinal canal, this is not well known in the lumbar region. A 30-year-old man was admitted to the emergency room with blunt trauma to the chest and abdomen with multiple contusions plus a dislocation of L4-L5 with an incomplete neurological injury. After an emergency open reduction and instrumentation of the dislocation, the patient developed a complete cauda equina syndrome that has resulted from an additional compression of the dural sac by a herniated disc. In a dislocation of the lumbar spine, MRI study is mandatory to check the state of the spinal canal prior to surgical reduction. A posterior approach is sufficient for reduction of the vertebral displacement, however an intra-canal exploration for bony or disc material should be systematically done.
Cauda equine; Herniated disc; Lumbar dislocation; MRI; Reduction
A rare case of three-level thoracic disc herniation with associated neurological impairment, including motor, sensor and urinary disturbances, is reported. The diagnosis and localization of the level of cord compression were mainly based on the clinical examination supported by the findings of magnetic resonance imaging and somatosensory evoked potentials. An anterolateral transthoracic approach at the uppermost affected level was selected for removal of all herniated discs, with the use of a surgical microscope; the resected rib was used for intervertebral fusion. An improvement in the patient's subjective and neurological condition was already apparent a few months after the operation, and solid fusion was roentgenographically found at all operated levels. The use of a surgical microscope allows complete removal of the herniated disc while avoiding wide vertebrectomy and associated iatrogenic damage to the spinal cord.
Thoracic disc herniation; Thoracotomy
We present clinical findings, radiological characteristics and surgical modalities of various posterior approaches to thoracic disc herniations and report the clinical results in 27 consecutive patients. Within an 8-year period 27 consecutive patients (17 female, 10 male) aged 30–83 years (mean 53 years.) were surgically treated for 28 symptomatic herniated thoracic discs in our department. Six of these lesions (21%) were calcified. In all cases surgery was performed via individually tailored posterior approaches. We evaluated the pre- and postoperative clinical status and the complication rate in a retrospective study. Nearly one half of the lesions (46.4%) were located at the three lowest thoracic segments. Clinical symptoms included back pain or radicular pain (77.8%), altered sensitivity (77.8%), weakness (40.7%), impaired gait (51.9%) or bladder dysfunction (22%). Costotransversectomy was performed in 8 patients, 1 lateral extracavitary approach, 2 foraminotomies, 15 transfacet and/or transpedicular approaches and 2 interlaminar approaches were used for removing the pathologies. After a mean follow-up of 38.6 months (3–100 months), complete normalization or reduction of local pain was recorded in 87% of the patients and of radicular pain in 70% of the cases, increased motor strength could be achieved in 55%, sensitivity improved in 76.2% and improvement of myelopathy was noted in 71.4%. Two patients suffered from postoperative impairment of sensory deficits, which in one case was discrete. The overall recovery rate within the modified JOA score was 39.5%. In 1 patient, two revisions were required because of instability and a persisting osteophyte, respectively. The rate of major complications was 7.1% (2/28). Surgical treatment of thoracic disc herniations via posterior approaches tailored to the individual patient produces satisfying results referring to clinical outcome. Posterior approaches remain a viable alternative for a large proportion of patients with symptomatic thoracic disc herniations.
Thoracic disc herniation; Posterolateral approach; Transthoracic approach; Thoracoscopic discectomy; Costotransversectomy
Posterior epidural migration of thoracic disc herniation is extremely rare but may occur in the same manner as in the lumbar spine.
A 53-year-old Japanese man experienced sudden onset of incomplete paraplegia after lifting a heavy object. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a posterior epidural mass compressing the spinal cord at the T9-T10 level. The patient underwent emergency surgery consisting of laminectomy at T9-T10 with right medial facetectomy, removal of the mass lesion, and posterior instrumented fusion. Histological examination of the mass lesion yielded findings consistent with sequestered disc material. His symptoms resolved, and he was able to resume walking without a cane 4 weeks after surgery.
Pre-operative diagnosis of posterior epidural migration of herniated thoracic disc based on magnetic resonance imaging alone may be overlooked, given the rarity of this pathology. However, this entity should be considered among the differential diagnoses for an enhancing posterior thoracic extradural mass.
Intervertebral disc herniation; Posterior migration; Thoracic spine
The prevalence of intervertebral disc herniation (IDH) of the thoracic spine is rare compared to the cervical or lumbar spine. In particular, IDH of the upper thoracic spine is extremely rare. We report the case of T1-2 IDH and its treatment, with a literature review. A 37-year-old male patient visited our hospital due to radiating pain at the left upper extremity and weakness of grip power. In cervical spine magnetic resonance images, T1-2 disc space showed herniated disc material and compressed T1 root was identified. Laminoforaminotomy was performed with a posterior approach. The radiating pain and weakness of grip power improved immediately after the surgery. Of patients who show radiating pain or numbness at the medial aspect of forearm, or weakness of intrinsic muscle of hand, can be suspected to have T1 radiculopathy. A detailed physical examination and a radiologic evaluation including this area should be required for the T1 radiculopathy.
Thoracic Vertebrae; Intervertebral Disc; Radiculopathy; Laminotomy
Intraradicular lumbar disc herniation is a rare complication of disc disease that is generally diagnosed only during surgery. The mechanism for herniated disc penetration into the intradural space is not known with certainty, but adhesion between the radicular dura and the posterior longitudinal ligament was suggested as the most important condition. The authors report the first case of an intraradicular lumbar disc herniation without subdural penetration; the disc hernia was lodged between the two radicular dura layers. The patient, a 34-year-old soldier, was admitted with a 12-month history of low back pain and episodic left sciatica. Neurologic examination showed a positive straight leg raising test on the left side without sensory, motor or sphincter disturbances. Spinal CT scan and MRI exploration revealed a left posterolateral osteophyte formation at the L5–S1 level with an irregular large disc herniation, which migrated superiorly. An intradural extension was suspected. A left L5 hemilaminectomy and S1 foraminotomy were performed. The exploration revealed a large fragment of disc material located between the inner and outer layers of the left S1 radicular dura. The mass was extirpated without cerebrospinal fluid outflow. The postoperative course was uneventful. Radicular interdural lumbar disc herniation should be suspected when a swollen, hard and immobile nerve root is present intraoperatively.
Intradural disc herniation; Intraradicular lumbar disc; Magnetic resonance imaging; Spinal nerve root compression
The posterior clinoid process, a bony prominence at the superolateral aspect of the dorsum sellae, has a strategic importance in a transcavernous approach to basilar tip aneurysms. To further optimize this microsurgical technique during posterior clinoidectomy, we performed a cadaveric study of this regional anatomy, describe a technique called dural tailoring, and report initial results in the surgical treatment of upper basilar artery (BA) aneurysm. After 10 adult cadaver heads (silicone-injected) were prepared for dissection, a posterior clinoidectomy with dural tailoring was performed. The dura overlying the upper clivus was coagulated with bipolar electrocoagulation and incised. Stripping dura off the clivus and lateral reflection then exposed the ipsilateral posterior clinoid process and dorsum sellae, thus creating a dural flap. Posterior clinoidectomy with dural tailoring was then used in seven patients with upper BA aneurysms. Our stepwise modification of the posterior clinoidectomy with dural tailoring created a flap that afforded protection of the cavernous sinus and oculomotor nerve. During surgery, there were no recorded intraoperative injuries to neurovascular structures. One patient died postoperatively from morbidity related to severe-grade subarachnoid hemorrhage. Postoperative oculomotor nerve palsy occurred in 3 patients (43%). In all cases, the nerve was anatomically preserved and partial to complete recovery was recorded during the first postoperative year. This technique effectively provided exposure of retrosellar upper basilar aneurysms in seven patients (basilar tip 43% and superior cerebellar artery aneurysms 57%). Outcomes and safety are at least equivalent to or better than basilar aneurysm surgery performed without surgical adjuncts, presumably a less complex subset.
Posterior clinoid; clinoidectomy; dural tailoring; basilar artery; oculomotor nerve
Migration of a disc fragment to the posterior epidural space is rare, especially in the thoracic spine. Only four such cases of posterior epidural migration of thoracic disc fragments have been reported. The authors report a case of 66-year-old man who presented with back pain and right leg weakness due to posterior epidural migration of thoracic disc fragment. The patient was successfully treated by laminectomy and partial facetectomy with disc removal.
Thoracic disc herniation; Migration; Posterior epidural space; Magnetic resonance imaging
Study design: Prospective randomized animal study.
Objective: To determine a surgical technique for reproducible and functional intervertebral disc replacement in an orthotopic animal model.
Methods: The caudal 3/4 intervertebral disc (IVD) of the rat tail was approached by two surgical techniques: blunt dissection, stripping and retracting (Technique 1) or incising and repairing (Technique 2) the dorsal longitudinal tendons. The intervertebral disc was dissected and removed, and then either discarded or reinserted. Outcome measures were perioperative complications, spontaneous tail movement, 7T MRI (T1- and T2-sequences for measurement of disc space height (DSH) and disc hydration). Microcomputed tomographic imaging (micro CT) was additionally performed postmortem.
Results: No vascular injuries occurred and no systemic or local infections were observed over the course of 1 month. Tail movements were maintained. With tendon retraction (Technique 1) gross loss of DSH occurred with both discectomy and reinsertion. Tendon division (Technique 2) maintained DSH with IVD reinsertion but not without. The DSH was demonstrated on MRI measurement. A new scoring system to assess IVD appearances was described.
Conclusions: The rat tail model, with a tendon dividing surgical technique, can function as an orthotopic animal model for IVD research. Mechanical stimulation is maintained by preserved tail movements. 7T MRI is a feasible modality for longitudinal monitoring for the rat caudal disc.
Cervical Deuk Laser Disc Repair® is a novel full-endoscopic, anterior cervical, trans-discal, motion preserving, laser assisted, nonfusion, outpatient surgical procedure to safely treat symptomatic cervical disc diseases including herniation, spondylosis, stenosis, and annular tears. Here we describe a new endoscopic approach to cervical disc disease that allows direct visualization of the posterior longitudinal ligament, posterior vertebral endplates, annulus, neuroforamina, and herniated disc fragments. All patients treated with Deuk Laser Disc Repair were also candidates for anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF).
A total of 142 consecutive adult patients with symptomatic cervical disc disease underwent Deuk Laser Disc Repair during a 4-year period. This novel procedure incorporates a full-endoscopic selective partial decompressive discectomy, foraminoplasty, and posterior annular debridement. Postoperative complications and average volume of herniated disc fragments removed are reported.
All patients were successfully treated with cervical Deuk Laser Disc Repair. There were no postoperative complications. Average volume of herniated disc material removed was 0.09 ml.
Potential benefits of Deuk Laser Disc Repair for symptomatic cervical disc disease include lower cost, smaller incision, nonfusion, preservation of segmental motion, outpatient, faster recovery, less postoperative analgesic use, fewer complications, no hardware failure, no pseudoarthrosis, no postoperative dysphagia, and no increased risk of adjacent segment disease as seen with fusion.
Cervical radiculopathy; Deuk Laser Disc Repair®; endoscopic spine surgery; intervertebral disc degeneration; intervertebral disc displacement; minimally invasive spine surgery
Detailed descriptions of stepwise dural opening/removal for combined petrosal approach are presented. Following maximum bone work, the first dural incision was made along the undersurface of the temporal lobe parallel to the superior petrosal sinus. Posterior extension of the dural incision was made in a curved fashion, keeping away from the transverse-sigmoid junction and taking care to preserve the vein of Labbé. A second incision was made perpendicular to the first incision. After sectioning the superior petrosal sinus around the porus trigeminus, the incision was extended toward the posterior fossa dura in the middle fossa region. The tentorium was incised toward the incisura at a point just posterior to the entrance of the trochlear nerve. A third incision was made longitudinally between the superior petrosal sinus and the jugular bulb. A final incision was initiated perpendicular to the third incision in the presigmoid region and extended parallel to the superior petrosal sinus connecting the second incision. The dural complex consisting of the temporal lobe dura, the posterior fossa dura, and the freed tentorium could then be removed. In addition to extensive bone resection, our strategic cranial base dural opening/removal can yield true advantages for the combined petrosal approach.
Combined petrosal approach; dural opening; petroclival lesion; skull base surgery
We report a case of a 66-year-old woman with progressing myelopathy. Her history revealed instrumented fusion from T10 to S1 for degenerative lumbar kyphosis and spinal stenosis. The plain radiographs showed narrowing of the intervertebral disc space with a gas shadow and sclerotic end-plate changes at T9-T10. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a posterolateral mass compressing the spinal cord at the T9-T10 level. The patient was treated with a discectomy through the posterior approach combined with posterior instrumentation. The patient's symptoms and myelopathy resolved completely after the discectomy and instrumented fusion. The thoracic disc herniation might have been caused by the increased motion and stress concentration at the adjacent segment.
Adjacent; Thoracic; Disc herniation; Paraplegia
The objective of this study was to describe an adult male patient with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) associated with thoracic spinal cord herniation (TSCH). TSCH is a scarce entity presented as a displacement of thoracic cord through an anterior or anterolateral dural defect. More importantly, the co-occurrence of AS and thoracic spinal cord herniation is exceptional. To date, only one case of SCH in association with AS has been reported in the literature. A 56-year-old male patient presented with the progressive difficulty in walking and numbness of both lower limbs for the past 18 months. The patient was diagnosed as AS when he was 30 years old. Sagittal MRI of thoracic spine showed dural defect of the posterior aspect of T11 and 12 vertebral bodies. Axial T2-weighted MRI demonstrated that spinal cord was displaced ventrally and to the right. The diagnosis of TSCH with AS was established. The prognosis was explained to the patient. We recommended duraplasty for dural repair to the patient, but he refused surgery. The results demonstrated that TSCH associated with long-standing AS was very uncommon, and MRI is recommended to rule out SCH in the long-standing AS patients with neurologic symptoms. The SCH in AS might be caused by inflammation, and thoracolumbar hyperkyphosis results from AS might be associated with the development of SCH.
Ankylosing spondylitis; Thoracic spinal cord herniation
Percutaneous endoscopic lumbar discectomy (PELD) for migrated disc herniations is technically demanding due to the absence of the technical guideline. The purposes of this study were to propose a radiologic classification of disc migration and surgical approaches of PELD according to the classification. A prospective study of 116 consecutive patients undergoing single-level PELD was conducted. According to preoperative MRI findings, disc migration was classified into four zones based on the direction and distance from the disc space: zone 1 (far up), zone 2 (near up), zone 3 (near down), zone 4 (far down). Two surgical approaches were used according to this classification. Near-migrated discs were treated with “half-and-half” technique, which involved positioning a beveled working sheath across the disc space to the epidural space. Far-migrated discs were treated with “epiduroscopic” technique, which involved introducing the endoscope into the epidural space completely. The mean follow-up period was 14.5 (range 9–20) months. According to the Macnab criteria, satisfactory results were as follows: 91.6% (98/107) in the down-migrated discs; 88.9% (8/9) in the up-migrated discs; 97.4% (76/78) in the near-migrated discs; and 78.9% (30/38) in the far-migrated discs. The mean VAS score decreased from 7.5 ± 1.7 preoperatively to 2.6 ± 1.8 at the final follow-up (P < 0.0001). There were no recurrence and no approach-related complications during the follow-up period. The proposed classification and approaches will provide appropriate surgical guideline of PELD for migrated disc herniation. Based on our results, open surgery should be considered for far-migrated disc herniations.
Percutaneous endoscopic lumbar discectomy; Migrated disc herniation; Radiologic classification