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August 1979

Massive Spinal Cord Necrosis in Schistosomiasis

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Pathology and Neurology, State University of Campinas (Brazil), School of Medicine.

Arch Neurol. 1979;36(8):517-519. doi:10.1001/archneur.1979.00500440087021

• Spinal cord lesions are rare in schistosomiasis. Schistosomal ova usually elicit a granulomatous myelitis in which necrotic foci are sometimes observed, but extensive cord necrosis is exceptional. A 19-year-old Brazilian woman had transverse myelitis that ended fatally one month and a half thereafter. Autopsy disclosed a total myelonecrosis below T-4, and ova of Schistosoma mansoni were demonstrated in the necrotic cord tissue and leptomeninges. This is, to our knowledge, the most extensive necrosis of the spinal cord reported to date in schistosomiasis.