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July 18, 1925


JAMA. 1925;85(3):186-189. doi:10.1001/jama.1925.02670030028008

Our object is to report two cases of flaccid paraplegia of rather unusual origin.

Flaccid paraplegia is a flaccid paralysis of two corresponding extremities, and is the antithesis of spastic paraplegia. It may result from many causes, of which the most common are: (1) section of the cord from direct trauma, such as bullet and stab wounds; (2) compression as a result of fracture, dislocation, spondylithiasis, extramedullary neoplasm or hemorrhage; (3) infections, such as tuberculosis, syphilis, poliomyelitis, malaria, septic meningomyelitis and abscess; (4) simple degeneration or myelomalacia, accompanying diseases of the hematopoietic system and thrombosis; (5) exogenous toxins, such as lead and alcohol; (6) unknown etiology, such as Landry's disease, and (7) congenital defects, such as abiotrophy and intrauterine paralyses.

The symptoms of flaccid paraplegia are: (1) paralysis; (2) loss of reflexes; (3) flaccidity; (4) atrophy; (5) vasomotor disturbances, and (6) sensory disturbances.

The following two cases are sufficiently unusual

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