We retrospectively analyzed thirty-three patients (21 males, 12 females) with malignancy induced spinal cord compression (SCC). The mean age of the patients was 42.8 years and almost half (51%) of them presented with SCC. Mean duration of symptoms was 4.5 months and the mean interval between the original diagnosis of cancer and the development of SCC was 14.6 months. Back pain was the most frequent (97%) symptom with an equal number of patients having subjective or objective evidence of lower limb weakness. Majority (73%) of the patients were non-ambulatory at the time of diagnosis. Spinal level involvement was mostly thoracic (62%) followed by lumber (38%). Breast cancer was the commonest underlying malignancy (21%). Lung (12%), prostrate (12%), multiple myeloma (9%), and carcinoma with unknown primary (12%) were also frequently encountered. There was an overall response rate of 22% to the therapeutic interventions: mostly observed in the ambulatory patients. Only 7% of the non-ambulatory patients regained ability to walk. None of the responders had bladder or bowel dysfunction. Twenty-two percent of the responders are still ambulatory with a mean follow-up of six months.
Journal of Pakistan Medical Association
(1991). Epidural spinal cord compression from metastatic cancer: clinical features and management. Journal of Pakistan Medical Association, 41(3), 60-62.
Available at: https://ecommons.aku.edu/pakistan_fhs_mc_med_nephrol/23
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