[Intramedullary spinal cord metastasis: is there a place for surgery? Case report and review of literature]

Neurochirurgie. 2002 Dec;48(6):533-6.
[Article in French]


Background and purpose: The usual onset of intramedullary spinal cord metastases at an advanced stage of cancer disease explains that surgical removal of such lesions is rarely performed. We tried to define the place for surgery in the management of such lesions.

Methods: We report the observation of a 52-year-old male patient presenting with a metastasis of the conus medullaris revealing a lung cancer. Surgical excision of the lesion led to pain relief and improvement of bladder dysfunction. We present a review of pertinent literature.

Results: Surgery allows histological diagnosis in case of isolated, revealing tumor. In other selected cases, radical removal of intramedullary metastases could improve the quality and comfort of life although it does not seem to affect the duration of survival.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / complications
  • Adenocarcinoma / secondary*
  • Adenocarcinoma / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Medulla / pathology*
  • Kidney Medulla / surgery*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / complications
  • Kidney Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Male
  • Microsurgery / methods
  • Middle Aged
  • Spinal Cord Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Spinal Cord Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Urinary Bladder Diseases / etiology
  • Urinary Bladder Diseases / physiopathology