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General information on syringomyelia

Wednesday 18 February 2009

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Why may the cerebrospinal liquid form a collection in the spinal cord ?

Professor Ulrich Batzdorff (UCLA, Los Angeles) is used to considering that it is because the liquid flows badly outside the spinal cord that it will be inside the latter, and years after years, build a collection that can remain silent for a long time and cause no trouble. Let’s recall that the brain and the spinal cord are surmounted by meninges with liquid and that this cerebrospinal liquid flows. Any kind of obstacle in the sub-arachnoid space can be associated with the development of syringomyelia.

How is syringomyelia usually diagnosed ?

This diagnosis is based on the MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) of the spinal cord and in particular on the so called sequences saggital T2 of MRI which make it possible to visualise the CSF with a white hypersignal. On this examination your GP is able to specify the extension of the syringomyelia cavity in height (saggital plan) and from front to back, in width on an axial plan and determine if the extension prevails on one side.