Extensive arachnoid ossification with associated syringomyelia presenting as thoracic myelopathy. Case report and review of the literature

J Neurosurg. 1999 Oct;91(2 Suppl):223-9. doi: 10.3171/spi.1999.91.2.0223.


The authors present the case of progressive thoracic myelopathy caused by the extensive ossification of the arachnoid membrane and associated intramedullary syrinx. Based on their findings and results of the literature search, they describe a pathological basis for this rare condition, discuss its incidence and symptomatology, and suggest a simple classification for various types of the arachnoid ossification. They also discuss the magnetic resonance imaging features of arachnoid ossification and associated spinal cord changes. The particular value of plain computerized tomography, which is highly sensitive in revealing intraspinal calcifications and ossifications, in the diagnostic evaluation of patients with a clinical picture of progressive myelopathy is emphasized.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arachnoid / diagnostic imaging
  • Arachnoid / pathology*
  • Arachnoid / surgery
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Middle Aged
  • Ossification, Heterotopic* / complications
  • Ossification, Heterotopic* / surgery
  • Paralysis / etiology*
  • Syringomyelia / complications*
  • Syringomyelia / surgery
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed