Spinal cord ischaemia following the gluteal injection of Benzathine benzylpenicillin

Spinal Cord Ser Cases. 2022 Mar 21;8(1):33. doi: 10.1038/s41394-022-00503-z.


Introduction: Spinal cord injury is a devastating complication, though rare but possible following the intramuscular injection of the Penicillin. The spinal cord injury can be permanent, leaving the patient with paralysis, bowel and bladder incontinence, and with other associated morbidities.

Case presentation: We report a 25-year-old gentleman who developed anterior spinal cord syndrome following the benzathine benzylpenicillin injection. In this case report, we discuss the clinical details, possible hypothesis behind spinal cord ischaemia and literature review.

Discussion: Spinal cord ischaemia or infarction occurs due to embolism of the Penicillin products. The products following injection are carried as emboli retrogradely through the superior gluteal artery and can cause infarction to the cord's anterior part.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Humans
  • Infarction / chemically induced
  • Infarction / etiology
  • Injections, Intramuscular / adverse effects
  • Male
  • Penicillin G Benzathine / adverse effects
  • Spinal Cord Injuries* / etiology
  • Spinal Cord Ischemia* / chemically induced
  • Spinal Cord Ischemia* / complications
  • Spinal Cord Ischemia* / etiology


  • Penicillin G Benzathine