Facet cyst haematoma in the lumbar spine: a report of four cases.

N. Miyatake, T. Aizawa, H. Hyodo, H. Sasaki, T. Kusakabe, T. Sato

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11 Citations (Scopus)


We present 4 cases of facet cyst haematoma in the ligamentum flavum of the lumbar spine. All patients presented with a one-to-3-month history of back pain or numbness in the legs, and sudden neurological deterioration. One also developed cauda equina syndrome and another developed radiculopathy. In all cases, magnetic resonance imaging showed a mass with high signal intensity on both T1- and T2-weighted images. Facet arthrography and computed tomography revealed communication between the mass and the neighbouring facet joint. The haematomas were removed en bloc with the ligamentum flavum. They were surrounded by the ligament and contained degenerated and lacerated elastic fibres but no synovial lining cells. Facet cyst haematoma is so-named because of bleeding from tissue adjacent to the facet joint into a pre-existing facet cyst.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-84
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Surgery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Apr


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