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Inflammatory Diseases that Cause Cauda Equina Syndrome

Cauda Equina Syndrome is a condition in which the nerves at the bottom of the spinal cord are compressed. This compression can be caused in a number of ways, one of which is an inflammatory disease.

Inflammatory diseases and Cauda Equina Syndrome

There are various inflammatory diseases that can cause Cauda Equina Syndrome, with two of the most common being ankylosing spondylitis and spinal arachnoiditis. We explore each in more detail below:-

1. Ankylosing spondylitis

Ankylosing spondylitis is a type of chronic arthritis of the spine. Inflammation can occur in any part of the spine, leading to symptoms such as a stiff and painful back, and fatigue. Evidently these symptoms will be difficult enough, but further complications will arise if the inflammation affects the bottom of the spine.

This is because the spinal joints and ligaments that surround the end of the spine will become swollen, pressing upon the bundle of nerves located at the end of the spinal cord. These nerves are called the cauda equina, so called because they resemble a horse’s tail. If the swelling continues to press upon the nerves, the cauda equina will become damaged, gradually losing function. An ankylosing spondylitis sufferer will then have developed Cauda Equina Syndrome.

2. Spinal arachnoiditis

Spinal arachnoiditis is when the membranes that surround the nerves of the spinal cord (called the arachnoids) become inflamed. This can happen due to direct injury to the spine, complications of spinal surgery and viral infection. The inflammation of spinal arachnoiditis presses upon the cauda equina nerves, located at the bottom of the spinal cord. This leads to symptoms such as bladder/bowel dysfunction, numbness in the legs and severe shootings pains.

Treating Cauda Equina Syndrome

If you are displaying symptoms associated with Cauda Equina Syndrome (CES), medical professionals must take immediate action to discover whether you have CES, and if so, what the underlying cause is. If the problem is being caused by an inflammatory condition, no time should be wasted in providing the necessary treatment.

Claims for Cauda Equina Syndrome

But sadly not all doctors recognise the signs of Cauda Equina Syndrome, meaning your inflammatory condition remain untreated. However, this will lead to terrible complications, as the longer the inflammation presses upon the cauda equina nerves, the more extensive the injury will be. If compression continues for too long, the damage will be so severe that the nerve cells die, resulting in permanent complications.

If a delay in diagnosing and treating Cauda Equina Syndrome has affected you, you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation. For more information, contact us today at the Cauda Equina Solicitors.

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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