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Thread: Difference between hydromyelia and syringomyelia

  1. #1

    Difference between hydromyelia and syringomyelia

    Good morning! I was wondering if anyone could tell me the difference between hydromyelia and syringomyelia? The way I understand it is that hydromyelia lies completely in the central canal. I was diagnosed with hydromyelia in my thoracic spine. Can this eventually grow/turn into syringomyelia? Thanks for any input!

    MRI images of all three sections of spine and brain are coming back normal, no stenosis, etc. and brain mri was clear too!

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by chiguy View Post
    Good morning! I was wondering if anyone could tell me the difference between hydromyelia and syringomyelia? The way I understand it is that hydromyelia lies completely in the central canal. I was diagnosed with hydromyelia in my thoracic spine. Can this eventually grow/turn into syringomyelia? Thanks for any input!

    MRI images of all three sections of spine and brain are coming back normal, no stenosis, etc. and brain mri was clear too!
    According to http://www.healthline.com/galecontent/hydromyelia, syringomyelia refers to a condition where the fluid collects outside the spinal canal. I strongly disagree with this definition. It is wrong. In my opinion, hydromyelia is a form of syringomyelia where the central canal is enlarged. Hydromyelia is a small slit-like enlargement of the central canal and was first described by Batsdorf at UCLA. He pointed out that these small slit-like enlargements do not usually progress into large cysts that are more typically referred to as syringomyelia.

    The term syringomyelia comes from the Greek words syringo and myelia, referring respectively to tube or pipe (i.e. syringe) and marrow (Source).
    The condition of cavitation in the spinal cord was first described by Estienne in 1546 and named in 1824 by Charles Olliveir d'Angers, who described the cylindrical dilation in the spinal cord that communicates with the fourth ventricle. The central canal of course communicates with the Fourth Ventricle.

    The term hydromyelia is of more recent origin. In 2009, a German group (Source) published a study of 152 people for syringomyelia and found that many people with small slit-like enlargements of the central canal. They called this condition hydromyelia, after Batsdorf who had used this term to refer to such cysts. They pointed out that such people usually did not show progression or neurological symptoms.

    I think that what you have might be called hydromyelia.

    Wise.

  3. #3

    Thanks

    Wise,

    Thanks for the information....... the cavity is from t8 - t9 widest width is 1.9 mm. It extends from t2-t11, but is not greater than the previously mentioned width. MRI's have been stable for a year and a half since cavity was found. Would you suggest further testing for a cause of potential blockage of CSF flow.... as mentioned, all MRI"s normal and all neuro tets normal to this date or is this just reserved for if the cavity grew?
    Last edited by chiguy; 07-05-2010 at 01:49 PM. Reason: new question

  4. #4
    IMO I would not pursue further testing unless needed by neuro changes. However, I will abdicate that advice to whatever Dr. Young says.

    CKF

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