Idiopathic spinal cord herniation (ISCH) is very rare. Some reports have described postoperative ventral cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) collections in patients with ISCH; however, such collections are asymptomatic in most patients, and there is no consensus regarding whether they are part of the natural history or a complication.
A 30-year-old man with ISCH underwent direct closure of a duplicated dura mater. Eight months postoperatively, he developed reworsening of right lower limb paresis and new severe right arm pain and paresis. Three-dimensional magnetic resonance imaging revealed ventral CSF collections, which the authors judged as the responsible lesions. The authors initially considered these collections to be present in the epidural space, extradurally compressing the dural sac and resulting in myelopathy. An epidural blood patch failed; however, a CSF drainage test resulted in dramatic improvement. The authors therefore determined that the CSF collections were located in the interdural space, not the epidural space. A lumboperitoneal (LP) shunt was performed to reduce the CSF pressure. The patient’s symptoms improved immediately postoperatively. He had developed no recurrence of symptoms 6 months after surgery.
Ventral interdural CSF collections after ISCH surgery can cause reworsening of myelopathy and may be cured by a LP shunt to control CSF pressure.