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Cauda Equina Syndrome from Spinal Stenosis

Cauda equina syndrome is a rare neurological condition. It has many possible causes, one of which is spinal stenosis.

What is spinal stenosis?

Spinal stenosis is when the spinal canal becomes abnormally narrow. The spinal canal is the space through which the spinal cord runs, starting at top of the neck and ending in the lower back.

There are various ways in which the amount of space available within the spinal cord may be reduced, including:-

How can spinal stenosis lead to cauda equina syndrome?

If the spinal canal narrows in the lumbar region of the back (i.e. the lower back), it will press upon the nerve roots called the cauda equina nerves. These sit at the end of the spinal cord and enable sensation and function in the lower limbs, pelvic organs and genitalia.

The cauda equina nerves are very delicate. Therefore if they are compressed they will quickly become damaged, resulting in a loss of function. The affected individual will begin to suffer problems such as chronic pain back, bladder dysfunction, numbness between the legs and poor anal tone.

When these symptoms arise because of injury to the cauda equine nerves, a person is said to have cauda equina syndrome.

Diagnosing and treating cauda equina syndrome

Cauda equina syndrome is a medical emergency. This is because the nerves will quickly become damaged and lose function. It does not take very long for this damage to become so extensive that the injury is irreparable. When this occurs, a patient will be left with permanent neurological complications.

The only way to avoid these life-changing complications is to provide early decompression surgery. This will relieve the pressure being placed upon the nerves, preventing any further damage.

If medical professionals fail to diagnose and treat cauda equina syndrome in a timely fashion and this leads to further injury, there may be grounds for a medical negligence compensation claim.

Contact us today

If you have developed cauda equina syndrome because of spinal stenosis but medical professionals failed to realise what was happening, get in touch with us today. We will be able to suggest whether or not you are entitled to claim compensation.

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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