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Year : 2001  |  Volume : 49  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 243--6

Spinal congenital dermal sinus : an experience of 23 cases over 7 years.

Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi--110 085, India., India

Correspondence Address:
A Jindal
Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi--110 085, India.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 11593240

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Spinal congenital dermal sinus is a rare entity, which supposedly results from the failure of neuroectoderm to separate from the cutaneous ectoderm during the process of neurulation. The present study was undertaken to know the clinical profile of these patients, to study associated anomalies and to assess the results of surgical intervention. We had 23 patients with male : female ratio of 9:16. Only 2 patients were below 2 years of age and most cases (16) were between 2-16 years (mean age =10.2 years). Lumbar region (17 cases) was most frequently involved, followed by lumbosacral and thoracic region in 3 patients each. Only three patients were asymptomatic at the time of presentation. Most of the cases presented with evidence of neural compression or tethered cord syndrome. Only one case presented with spinal abscess. The motor, sensory and autonomic deficits were seen in 20, 11 and 12 patients respectively. Scoliosis and CTEV (congenital talipus equino varus) were the common associated anomalies. MRI revealed associated dysraphic state of spinal cord in 21(>90%) cases. All patients underwent surgical exploration and repair of dysraphic state and excision of the sinus. None of the asymptomatic patients deteriorated. Overall 8 patients improved, 14 got their neurological status stabilized, including 3 asymptomatic cases. Only one patient deteriorated. Postoperative wound infection was seen in 2 cases. As age advances, the chance of developing neurological deficit increases. Associated dysraphic state should be looked for and treated simultaneously, using microsurgical technique, whenever possible. It is better to treat all these cases with aggressive surgical intervention before the neurological deficits appear.


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Online since 20th March '04
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow