The urological manifestations of the tethered spinal cord

J Urol. 1988 Nov;140(5 Pt 2):1285-8. doi: 10.1016/s0022-5347(17)42026-x.


The tethered spinal cord is an entity with potentially grave neurourological implications. Presenting urological symptoms include incontinence, symptomatic urinary tract infections and stool soiling. These symptoms may be the first to herald a tethered cord. The patients with previously repaired myelodysplastic defects are particularly prone to development of this lesion. We correlated urological history with preoperative and postoperative cystometry in 20 myelodysplastic children. In this study we noted that clinical symptomatology and urodynamic parameters improved in 60 per cent of those children who underwent cord untethering. A better result was evident in children whose condition was repaired promptly.

MeSH terms

  • Fecal Incontinence / etiology
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Neural Tube Defects / complications
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / complications*
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / diagnosis
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / surgery
  • Urinary Catheterization / methods
  • Urinary Incontinence / etiology
  • Urodynamics
  • Urologic Diseases / etiology*
  • Urologic Diseases / physiopathology
  • Urologic Diseases / therapy