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Cervical spine intradural-extramedullary hematoma presenting as ipsilateral hemiparesis

Chih Ming Lin
  • Chih Ming Lin
    Department of Neurology Cthay General Hospital , Hsinchu, Taiwan, Province of China |


A 75-year-old Taiwanese man suffered from acute onset of right-sided extremity weakness while talking to his neighbors. He was transferred to the hospital within three-hour time after symptom onset. Initial acute ischemic cerebral infarct was diagnosed based on his symptom and cerebral computed tomography. Thrombolytic therapy was held after his symptom improved promptly and could not excluded other etiology. Thorough history taking unraveled previous Chinese medicine clinic visit because of neck sore. However, he received limited improvement after several times of massage treatment. Magnetic resnance imaging (MRI) of the cervical spine demonstrated hematoma compressing right side intradural-extramedullary space at the C2/C3 level. Through his clinical course, muscle weakness was the sole neurological finding with sparing of sensory defects. Given the close anatomy relationship between sensory and motor lamina distribution in the cervical spinal cord, our patient presented a rare manifestation. Cases of cervical spine intradural-extramedullary hematoma are not often seen and only sporadic in the documented literature. We wish, through the report of this article, to inform the first- line physicians with the following information. Among the elderly, neck sore is a common symptom. Over- stretching or overt local massage is not suggested due to relatively fragile musculature. In the clinical diagnosis and localization of lesion, cerebral or cervical spine lesion could mimic with each other and manifest hemiparesis as their first symptom. Meticulous history taking, neurological/ physical examination and pertinent laboratory work-up should be done before initiation of intravenous thrombolytic therapy as it could cause catastrophic consequences if not used properly.



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Submitted: 2011-06-02 13:26:51
Published: 2011-08-05 15:33:55
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