Adult Tethered Cord Syndrome
[More] Tight Filum Terminale
Occult minor Spina Bifida and Occult Tethered Cord: invisible on Pre and Post MRI.
Cavernoma/Hemangioma T3/T4, Asymptomatic and incidental
'09: shoulder pain in rotator cuff
'10: trapezius pain and severe shoulder pain with benchpress (weightlifting hobby since 2004)
'11: severe neck and shoulder pain, cervical spine pain
'12: severe thoracic and cervical spinal pain, some lumbar pain
'13 knee and SI joint pain, Severe lumbar pain (full spine now) Pre and Post contrast MRI of total spine conducted.: Shows small Syrinx t11-T12 and suspected T3/T4 Cavernoma Hemangiomas. No visible tether or chiari. I am refered to a neurosurgeon who [correctly] diagnoses me with tethered cord. I consult with another neurosurgeon who say no to tethered cord diagnosis because the Conus Medulliaris is at normal height (approximately L2) and the syrinx is very small. This Dr. notes the cavernoma/hemangioma at t3-t4. However, I go forward with surgery to detether after reading about occult tight filum terminale. My decision predicated on the fact that my leg weakness had progressed to the point of needing to lean on objects and needing help along by family and friends to move around, and the surgeon's offer of near immediate surgery (in 2 weeks time). I I spent my days on bags of frozen peas for about a month pre surgery as I was in severe full body pain and spasm. . I am lucky in that I had surgery 4 weeks after diagnosis and right at the very moment I start to lose my ability to walk!!! I am very lucky to not have urological symptoms.
I go through with surgery end of August 2013 The neurosurgeon notes occult spina bifida as well at the beginning of surgery. After severing the tether, the spinal cord retracted up the canal, proving that it was a tight filum terminale. The surgery was "L5 Laminectomy and Detethering of Tethered Spinal Cord". The laminectomy is necessary to get access to the cord. I am now 2 months (October) out and have regained most of my ability except I have pain radiating from the cord between t6 up till the atlas. I have had Chiari ruled out based on cervical mri with both pre and post contrast by several neurosurgeons and radiologists, but I am still investigating further. I would like to have a Skull MRI conducted. That is the next step.
I have systematically recovered up to about t6 on my upper back since surgery. Everything above that is still symptomatic but I can drive my car again and sit down again! Hooray! Dr Sandhu and GTUH are the kindest people I have ever interacted with. I was impressed with every aspect of this surgery!!!
I was told that my tethered spinal cord should likely not retether and to expect it to heal gradually upwards!
I am looking forward to a full recovery (fingers crossed) and returning to weight lifting and also work. I have been cleared to try out my inversion table that I was using several months ago before my surgery, so I will probably research this further, the surgeon does not believe it to be a risk.
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