Neuromyelitis optica mimicking intramedullary tumor

J Korean Neurosurg Soc. 2013 May;53(5):316-9. doi: 10.3340/jkns.2013.53.5.316. Epub 2013 May 31.


Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is considered to be a rarer autoimmune disease than multiple sclerosis. It is very difficult to make a diagnosis of MNO for doctors who are not familiar with its clinical features and diagnostic criteria. We report a case of a young female patient who had been suffering motor weakness and radiating pain in both upper extremities. Cervical MRI showed tumorous lesion in spinal cord and performed surgery to remove lesion. We could not find a tumor mass in operation field and final diagnosis was NMO. NMO must be included in the differential diagnosis of lesions to rescue the patient from invasive surgical interventions. More specific diagnostic tools may be necessary for early diagnosis and proper treatment.

Keywords: Autoimmune disease; Neuromyelitis optica; Spinal tumor.

Publication types

  • Case Reports