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  • Author or Editor: Cheng-Chih Liao x
  • By Author: Lee, Shih-Tseng x
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Cheng-Chih Liao and Shih-Tseng Lee

✓ The authors report a case of focal ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) behind the L-3 vertebral body. This is relatively rare among previously reported cases in the literature. Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging revealed that the ossifying portion of the PLL was impinging on the left L-3 nerve root. Contrast enhancing hypertrophic PLL was also demonstrated around the ossification and along the lumbosacral PLL. Via a laminectomy and wide excision of the PLL the lesion was removed. Pathological examination revealed a nodule composed of fibrous cartilage, lamina bone, and mature fat marrow. Enchondral ossification could be identified under a microscope.

The authors believe that preoperative MR imaging evaluation is important for the detection of the relationship between an OPLL and the neural structure. Excision of the symptomatic OPLL should be performed when needed to obtain adequate nerve root decompression.

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Cheng-Chih Liao, Shih-Tseng Lee, Wen-Chin Hsu, Li-Rong Chen, Tai-Ngar Lui and Sai-Cheung Lee

Object. Spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma (SSEH) is a rare disease entity. Although many cases have been reported in the literature, controversy persists as to its origin, diagnosis, and timing of treatment. The authors conducted a study in patients treated in their hospital and report the results.

Methods. Clinical data obtained in 35 patients with SSEH were retrospectively reviewed. Age, sex, history of hypertension, and history of anticoagulation therapy were recorded, and data were analyzed to clarify the possible predisposing factors of SSEH. Neurological outcomes were reappraised using a standardized grading system and correlated with the time interval from initial ictus to surgery, duration of complete neurological deficits, and the rapidity of deterioration of paralysis. Nonparametric methods and Spearman rank-correlation coefficients were used for statistical analysis.

Conclusions. Surgery is a safe and effective procedure to treat SSEH. The disease-related mortality rate was 5.7%, the surgery-related complication rate was 2.9%, and there were no operation-related deaths. Neurological outcome after surgery is positively correlated with preoperative neurological deficits (88.9% complete recovery in patients with incomplete neurological deficits compared with 37.5% in those with complete deficits [p < 0.001]). In patients in whom the time interval from initial ictus was shorter (< 48 hours) and in whom the duration of complete neurological symptoms was also briefer (< 12 hours), there is a positive correlation with better neurological and functional recovery (p < 0.05).