Surgical approach to epidural spinal cord compression

Hematol Oncol Clin North Am. 2006 Dec;20(6):1307-17. doi: 10.1016/j.hoc.2006.09.009.


NOMS provides a framework to make decisions regarding surgery or radiation in the face of changing technology. NOMS reflects the most important decision points including neurologic, oncologic, mechanical stability, and systemic disease. Currently, patients who have high-grade epidural spinal cord compression (N) from radioresistant disease (O) or demonstrate mechanical instability (M) are offered surgery if they can tolerate it from a systemic (S) standpoint. Patients with radiosensitive tumors (O) are offered external beam radiation regardless of the degree of spinal cord compression (N). Patients with radioresistant tumors (O) who do not have significant spinal cord compression (N) are now offered IGIMRT as the best chance of controlling local tumor and avoiding an operation.

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Epidural Space / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Spinal Cord Compression* / diagnosis
  • Spinal Cord Compression* / etiology
  • Spinal Cord Compression* / surgery
  • Spinal Cord Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Spinal Cord Neoplasms* / secondary
  • Spinal Cord Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Treatment Outcome