Clinical Presentation and Diagnosis of Spinal Cord Compression General

• Once neurologic deficits appear, progression to irreversible paralysis may occur within hours to days.

• Around 10% to 38% of patients present with multiple sites of spinal involvement. Signs and Symptoms

• Back pain is present in more than 90% of patients.

• Initially localized and increases in intensity over several weeks

• Aggravated by movement, supine positioning, coughing, sneezing, neck flexion, straight leg raise, Valsalva maneuver, palpation of spine

• Sensory deficit

• Cervical spine compression—quadriplegia

• Thoracic spine compression—paraplegia

• Upper lumbar spine compression—bowel and bladder dysfunction (constipation and urinary retention) and abnormal extensor plantar reflexes

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