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Is Anal Numbness a Sign of Cauda Equina Syndrome?

Is Anal Numbness a Sign of Cauda Equina Syndrome?Loss of sensation in the buttocks may indicate that you are developing a life-changing condition and require emergency medical attention.

Saddle anaesthesia

If you have noticed that you do not seem to have much sensation when going to the toilet, it’s possible that you are developing cauda equina syndrome. Some people realise that they cannot feel when they wipe themselves after defecating (pooing). This is an aspect of a symptom often described as ‘saddle anaesthesia’ which is a red flag symptom of cauda equina syndrome.

Saddle anaesthesia means a loss of feeling or sensation in the areas of the body that would normally come into contact with a saddle. This would be the upper thighs, perineal and genital area between the legs as well as the buttocks and anus.

Alternatively, it may be that you still have some feeling in that region but that the level of sensation has changed and you may be experiencing a tingling feeling.

Cauda equina compression

If you are experiencing this loss of sensation in combination with lower back and leg pain, it is quite possible that you are developing cauda equina syndrome.

This may be a medical emergency.

You are likely to need an emergency MRI scan to confirm the cause of your symptoms and, if the cauda equina nerves at the base of the spine appear to be compressed, you will probably need emergency surgery depending on the extent of your symptoms and the degree of nerve compression.

Additional red flag symptoms

You may also be experiencing other symptoms which could indicate that you are suffering from nerve compression. These could well include the following:

Medical negligence

If medical professionals fail to recognise the significance of these symptoms and do not refer you for further investigation in a timely manner, it is possible that your condition will deteriorate and your long-term outcome may be significantly worse as a result.

In this scenario, your medical practitioner may well be considered to have acted negligently and it may be appropriate to make a claim for compensation for your pain, suffering and likely future financial losses.

Speak to a solicitor

If you or a loved one are suffering the appalling long-term effects of cauda equina syndrome due to a delay in diagnosis or treatment, contact us to talk to a specialist medical negligence solicitor. We will be happy to advise you.

Please call us free on 0800 234 3300, from a mobile click to call 01275 334030 or complete our Free Online Enquiry for a no cost, no obligation opinion.

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