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April 1981

Anterior Spinal Artery Syndrome During the Postpartum Period

Author Affiliations

Department of Psychiatry and Neurology Tulane University School of Medicine 1415 Tulane Ave New Orleans, LA 70112
Ochsner Foundation Hospital New Orleans, LA 70121

Arch Neurol. 1981;38(4):263. doi:10.1001/archneur.1981.00510040089020

To the Editor.—  The anterior spinal artery syndrome is an unusual cause of myelopathy during pregnancy and the postpartum period. In 1938, Barré and D'Andrade reported a case of anterior spinal artery infarction involving the fourth and fifth thoracic cord segments occurring during the seventh month of pregnancy1 and confirmed at the time of necropsy. We have recently seen a similar case.

Report of a Case.—  A 26-year-old woman, on her 20th day post partum after her fourth uncomplicated pregnancy and delivery, felt a deep burning pain in the chest and back that spread rapidly to the legs. After ten minutes, she was unable to move her legs or to void. There had been no preceding illness, neurologic symptoms, or symptoms of collagen vascular disease.The blood pressure was 110/70 mm Hg and pulse rate 90 beats per minute. The chest was clear and the results of a cardiac

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