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Article
September 27, 1941

THE EARLY DIAGNOSIS OF ACUTE SPINAL EPIDURAL ABSCESS: REPORT OF AN ILLUSTRATIVE CASE

Author Affiliations

PITTSBURGH
From the Montefiore Hospital; Isaac Kaufmann Foundation.

JAMA. 1941;117(13):1085-1088. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820390027008
Abstract

Acute spinal epidural abscess is a disease unfamiliar to most physicians. It is rarely diagnosed before the onset of irreparable damage to the spinal cord, and the true nature of the process is often discovered only at postmortem examination. We are reporting the following case to illustrate a sequence of symptoms and signs important in arriving at an early diagnosis. Prompt treatment will save the patient from lifelong disability or death.

REPORT OF CASE  I. P., a white girl aged 18, was admitted to the Montefiore Hospital July 7, 1937. The history was significant in that the patient had been operated on for acute and recurrent osteomyelitis eight times between February 1930 and December 1936. The right scapula, a rib, the left femur and the right femur had been involved. The patient was first seen on July 4, when she complained of severe pain in both loins and in the

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