Because in the early phases of spinal cord ischemia magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be normal, its clinical diagnosis is often difficult. We aimed to explore if motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) recordings may contribute to earlier diagnosis of spinal cord stroke. The clinical, MRI, and MEP findings in one case each of cervical and lumbar spinal cord infarction were reported. Spinal MRI at admission was unremarkable in both patients. At this time, MEPs were abnormal in both patients, to the upper and lower limbs in the first patient, exclusively to the lower limbs in the second. Follow-up MRI examinations documented an infarction in the territory of the anterior spinal artery and of the Adamkiewicz artery, respectively. MEP study can be useful in demonstrating spinal cord involvement also when radiological evidence for spinal cord damage is absent or equivocal. Early diagnosis may allow earlier intervention and contribute to improved patient management.
Useful keywords (using NLM MeSH Indexing)
Evoked Potentials, Motor/physiology*
Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
Spinal Cord Ischemia/pathology*
Spinal Cord Ischemia/physiopathology
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
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