Renato Gondar, Iris F. Brouze, Daniele Valsecchi, Gianluca Maestretti

June 2021, Volume 30, Issue 6, pp 1451 - 1459 Review Article Read Full Article 10.1007/s00586-021-06766-8

First Online: 23 February 2021


Spontaneous intracranial or intrathecal hypotension (SIH) is an underdiagnosed phenomenon predominantly presenting with low cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pressure and postural headache in the setting of CSF leak. Extrathecal CSF collections causing compression of the spinal cord or nerve roots present an even rarer subset of this disease. We aim to describe this pathology in a comprehensive manner while illustrating with a case of our own.


We present a literature review on spinal idiopathic pseudomeningoceles and their neurological implications illustrated with a case of an anterior compressive pseudomeningocele between C2 and D7. Further investigations through a myelography and myelo-CT were able to postulate a CSF leak through a discogenic osteophytic microspur at the level C5-C6.


Spinal manifestations are uncommon in cases of idiopathic or spontaneous CSF leak, occurring in about 6% of patients, but myelopathy and radiculopathy involving all spinal segments do occur. In contrast to the cranial complaints, the spinal manifestations usually are not positional and are caused by mass effect from an extradural CSF collection.


The utility of multiple imaging modalities such as dynamic myelography and the use of epidural blood patches and fibrin glue polymers should be explored, and surgery is an option if the symptoms persist despite other measures.

Read Full Article