[Syringomyelia secondary to adhesive arachnoiditis: clinical profiles and efficacy of shunt operations].No Shinkei Geka. 1993 Feb; 21(2):135-40.NS
The authors report nine cases of syringomyelia secondary to adhesive arachnoiditis treated in our institute from 1982 to 1991. Neurological signs, radiological features, and results of surgical treatment were reviewed. Common initial manifestations in association with syringomyelia were spastic paraparesis in 8 patients (88.9%), regional sensory loss in 4 (44.4%), neurogenic bladder in 4 (44.4%), and somatic pain in 2 (22.2%). All the neurological symptoms or signs progressed gradually for years. All the patients were treated with various modes of shunt operations, including syringo-peritoneal shunt in seven patients, syringo-subarachnoid shunt in one, and ventriculo-peritoneal shunt in one, respectively. Three patients who failed to resolve their major complaints after the first surgery further received syringo-peritoneal shunts. Postsurgical follow-up periods ranged from 18 months to 10 years. Serial MR imaging revealed a significant reduction of the size of syringomyelia in 8 of 9 patients. However only 6 patients showed certain improvement of neurological deficits. Three patients who failed to improve clearly had a long (beyond 15 years) history of syringomyelia before the first surgical treatment. A total of 11 syringo-peritoneal shunts were done in 8 patients of whom 5 patients improved neurologically. It was noticed that 4 of 5 successful syringo-peritoneal shunts were placed in the caudal level of the syrinx. In conclusion, syringo-peritoneal shunt may be at present an optimal mode of surgical management for syringomyelia secondary to adhesive arachnoiditis. In addition, we would like to recommend that follow-up serial MR imaging be done for patients having adhesive arachnoiditis in order to detect syringomyelia as early as possible.