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Rivista di Neurochirurgia

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Journal of Neurosurgical Sciences 2015 Oct 02


lingua: Inglese

Cervical spinal cord compression from delayed epidural scar tissue formation around plate lead for SCS. Case report and literature review

Guzzi G., Volpentesta G., Chirchiglia D., Della Torre A., Lavano F., Lavano A.

Department of Neurosurgery, University “Magna Graecia”, Campus “S. Venuta”, Catanzaro, Italy


Cervical spinal compression is a serious and rare complication of spinal cord stimulation (SCS) that can occur using leads placed via open surgical approach. The present report describe a case of cervical plate lead implant that developed spinal and radicular compression symptoms after seven years due to the growth of fibrotic epidural mass at the level of lead. A review of literature is provided.
CASE PRESENTATION: A 59-year-old woman with 3-year history of left arm post-traumatic complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) was treated with SCS performed with the implant of paddle lead in the epidural space from C3-C5. Seven years later she reported progressive paresthesia along the spine and the limbs, gait ataxia with sensation of weakness in the legs, increased muscle tone and tendon reflexes in the lower extremities and decrease in effectiveness of stimulation. Cervical CT showed a tissue mass into the cervical canal posteriorly to the lead. This finding was confirmed by MR performed after lead removal that also allowed to document the amount of spinal cord compression. The patient underwent C4-C5-C6 laminectomy and a thick scar was removed from the dura. After surgery there was progressive and incomplete improvement of neurological signs but symptoms related to algodystrophy recurred partly.
CONCLUSION: The formation of hypertrophic epidural scar tissue at the level of lead implant must be taken into consideration in presence of the onset of progressive cervical myelopathy in patient treated with SCS using laminectomy lead.

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