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J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1990 Jan;72(1):84-8.

Vertebral hydatidosis and paraplegia.

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Institut National d'Orthopedie, Mohamed Kassab, Kassar Saïd, Tunisia.


We report the management of two children and 11 adults with paraplegia secondary to vertebral hydatidosis. Destruction of pedicles, posterior vertebral elements and discs as well as the vertebral bodies was common and all six patients with thoracic disease had involvement of adjacent ribs. The 13 patients had a total of 42 major surgical procedures; two patients died from postoperative complications and four from complications of the disease and paraplegia. All eight patients initially treated by laminectomy or anterior decompression alone relapsed within two years and seven required further surgery. Circumferential decompression and grafting gave the best results, six of nine patients being in remission an average of three years and six months later. The prognosis for such patients is poor; remission is the aim, rather than cure. Anthelminthic drugs may improve the prognosis, but radical surgery is likely to remain the keystone of treatment in the foreseeable future.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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