The era of spinal tumor surgery began in 1887 when Gowers1 correctly diagnosed and Horsley successfully removed a tumor from the mid-dorsal cord. The operation was followed by almost complete recovery of sensation and motion. Since the publication of this remarkable case, in 1888, neurologists and surgeons have vied with each other in their efforts to improve the neurologic and surgical technic of the diagnosis and surgery of spinal tumor.
Although many patients have been rescued from early graves and others have been restored to perfect health from a state of invalidism, yet the total number of complete and partial recoveries is not so large as to make the report of a single case superfluous. The diagnosis in some instances is extremely easy and certain, while in others it can never reach beyond a probability. The difficulties in diagnosis have been sufficiently set forth in the instructive article
GRINKER J. INTRADURAL TUMOR OF THE MID-DORSAL CORDOPERATION: COMPLETE RECOVERY OF SENSATION AND PARTIAL RESTORATION OF MOTION. JAMA. 1909;LIII(15):1150–1155. doi:10.1001/jama.1909.92550150001001a