Spontaneous drainage of syringomyelia

Report of two cases

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✓ Two cases are reported of Arnold-Chiari type I malformation associated with syringomyelia, in which magnetic resonance (MR) imaging revealed spontaneous decompression of the syrinx. In one case axial MR imaging sections showed a communication between the syrinx and the spinal subarachnoid space, which supports the hypothesis that fissuring of the cord parenchyma is instrumental in the spontaneous resolution of syringomyelia. The MR imaging changes were not accompanied by variations in the patients' clinical course.

Article Information

Address reprint requests to: Antonio Santoro, M.D., Cattedra di Neurochirurgia, Dipartimento di Scienze Neurologiche, Università “La Sapienza,” Viale dell'Università, 30a, 00185 Roma, Italy.

© AANS, except where prohibited by US copyright law.

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Figures

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    Magnetic resonance images, sagittal projection, in Case 1. Left: Image obtained in February, 1988, showing an Arnold-Chiari type I malformation and cervicothoracic syringomyelia. Right: Image obtained in March, 1991, showing almost complete decompression of the syringomyelic cavity. The Arnold-Chiari type I malformation is unchanged.

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    Magnetic resonance image, axial view, obtained in Case 2 in January, 1992. There is visible communication (arrow) between the syringomyelic cavity and the spinal subarachnoid space, presumably the “fissuring” point of the spinal cord parenchyma.

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