Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Spinal Cord Cancer Overview

Another name for Spinal Cord Cancer is Spinal Cord Tumor.

What is a spinal cord tumor?
A person with a spinal cord tumor has a growth of abnormal cells near the spinal cord that form a mass. A tumor is cancerous if it spreads to other parts of the body. Benign tumors do not spread to other areas of the body. A spinal cord tumor can place pressure against the spinal cord. The pressure against the spinal cord interrupts the normal flow of information between the brain and the body.

What are the symptoms of a spinal cord tumor?
The most common symptoms of a spinal cord tumor include neck pain or back pain. Additional symptoms may include shoulder pain, arm pain, arm numbness, arm weakness, leg pain, leg numbness, leg weakness, muscle spasms, muscle atrophy, impotence, or urinary incontinence.

How does the doctor treat a spinal cord tumor?
Treatment for a spinal cord tumor may include corticosteroid medications, narcotic or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain, radiation therapy, or surgery.

Continue to Spinal Cord Cancer Symptoms

Last Updated: Sep 29, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Spinal Cord Cancer References
  1. Brotchi J. Intrinsic spinal cord tumor resection. Neurosurgery. 2002 May;50(5):1059-63. [11950409]
  2. Mawrin C, Synowitz HJ, Kirches E, Kutz E, Dietzmann K, Weis S. Primary primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the spinal cord: case report and review of the literature. Clin Neurol Neurosurg. 2002 Jan;104(1):36-40. [11792474]
  3. Pizzolitto S, Falconieri G, Demaglio G. Solitary fibrous tumor of the spinal cord: a clinicopathologic study of two cases. Ann Diagn Pathol. 2004 Oct;8(5):268-75. [15494932]
  4. Xu QW, Bao WM, Mao RL, Yang GY. Aggressive surgery for intramedullary tumor of cervical spinal cord. Surg Neurol. 1996 Oct;46(4):322-8. [8876712]
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