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May 1968

Syringomyelia With Bilateral Vocal Cord Paralysis Report of a CaseReport of a Case

Author Affiliations

From Hutzel Hospital, Detroit. Dr. Willis is currently a resident in otolaryngology at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1968;87(5):468-470. doi:10.1001/archotol.1968.00760060470005

THE TERM syringomyelia, signifying marrow tube, was introduced in 1824 by C. P. Ollivier to describe an abnormal cavity within the spinal cord. It is an uncommon entity that may be associated with other spinal cord abnormalities.1 It frequently presents a number of sensory and motor disturbances.

The etiology and pathogenesis are unknown and, classically, the disease is considered to be due to imperfect closure of the neural tube, persistence of embryonic cell rests and frequent cavity formation and liquefaction.2 The important pathologic change is a gliosis which precedes cyst formation. The gliosis is relatively acellular and there is no significant inflammatory change or vascular reaction in the wall of the cyst.3 The cavity occupies the central parts of the spinal cord but does not necessarily connect with the central canal. It is most frequent in the cervical region but may extend upward into the lateral tegmentum

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