Spinal cord and spinal nerve root involvement (myeloradiculopathy) in tuberculous meningitis

Medicine (Baltimore). 2015 Jan;94(3):e404. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000000404.

Abstract

Most of the information about spinal cord and nerve root involvement in tuberculous meningitis is available in the form of isolated case reports or case series. In this article, we evaluated the incidence, predictors, and prognostic impact of spinal cord and spinal nerve root involvement in tuberculous meningitis.In this prospective study, 71 consecutive patients of newly diagnosed tuberculous meningitis were enrolled. In addition to clinical evaluation, patients were subjected to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of brain and spine. Patients were followed up for at least 6 months.Out of 71 patients, 33 (46.4%) had symptoms/signs of spinal cord and spinal nerve root involvement, 22 (30.9%) of whom had symptoms/signs at enrolment. Eleven (15.4%) patients had paradoxical involvement. Paraparesis was present in 22 (31%) patients, which was of upper motor neuron type in 6 (8.4%) patients, lower motor neuron type in 10 (14%) patients, and mixed type in 6 (8.4%) patients. Quadriparesis was present in 3 (4.2%) patients. The most common finding on spinal MRI was meningeal enhancement, seen in 40 (56.3%) patients; in 22 (30.9%), enhancement was present in the lumbosacral region. Other MRI abnormalities included myelitis in 16 (22.5%), tuberculoma in 4 (5.6%), cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) loculations in 4 (5.6%), cord atrophy in 3 (4.2%), and syrinx in 2 (2.8%) patients. The significant predictor associated with myeloradiculopathy was raised CSF protein (>250 mg/dL). Myeloradiculopathy was significantly associated with poor outcome.In conclusion, spinal cord and spinal nerve root involvement in tuberculous meningitis is common. Markedly raised CSF protein is an important predictor. Patients with myeloradiculopathy have poor outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid Proteins / metabolism
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / isolation & purification
  • Paraparesis / epidemiology
  • Paraparesis / etiology
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • Radiculopathy / epidemiology
  • Radiculopathy / etiology*
  • Radiculopathy / metabolism
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Spinal Cord / microbiology*
  • Spinal Cord / pathology
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / epidemiology
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / etiology*
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / metabolism
  • Spinal Nerve Roots / microbiology*
  • Spinal Nerve Roots / pathology
  • Tuberculosis, Meningeal / complications*
  • Tuberculosis, Meningeal / diagnosis*
  • Tuberculosis, Meningeal / metabolism
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Biomarkers
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid Proteins