Spontaneous infarction of lumbar roots, vertebrae and paravertebral muscles

Published:January 27, 2021DOI:


      Ischemic injury to the lumbosacral nerve roots and plexus is a rare condition resulting from thrombosis of one or several lumbar arteries.
      As the arterial supply of the spine presents great variations between subjects, the clinical presentation of lumbar thrombosis is highly variable depending on the relative involvement of nerve roots, bones or muscles.
      Diagnosis can be challenging, especially in the acute phase, as different structures can be simultaneously involved. The identification of an enlarged vessel centered in the area of tissue damage can help with the final diagnosis.
      We present the case of a 59-year-old woman who presented with spontaneous incomplete cauda equina syndrome due to diffuse lumbar nerve root infarction. On imaging, acute lumbar artery thrombosis was confirmed, and in addition to nerve roots, adjacent vertebral and paraspinal muscle infarctions were also present.


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