Spinal cord infarction demonstrated by diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging

Mizuya Shinoyama, Toshiyuki Takahashi, Hiroaki Shimizu, Teiji Tominaga, Michiyasu Suzuki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Spinal cord infarction is a rare entity of varying etiology although most often associated with atherosclerotic aortic disease. Definitive diagnosis of (idiopathic) spinal cord infarction in the acute stage and in the absence of demonstrable predisposing factors is not always possible even with MRI. Diffusion-weighted MRI (dwMRI) may provide valuable information in the evaluation of spinal cord ischemia. A 45-year-old woman presented with idiopathic spinal cord infarction manifesting as sudden onset of paraparesis and sphincter dysfunction. Both T2-weighted and line-scan dwMRI revealed hyperintense signals in the dorsal part of the spinal conus. Apparent diffusion coefficient values were significantly low in the lesion, suggesting cytotoxic edema compatible with acute ischemia. The clinical course and other radiographic findings were also compatible with idiopathic spinal cord infarction. Diffusion-weighted MRI is an important diagnostic tool for examining patients with suspected spinal cord ischemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)466-468
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Clinical Neuroscience
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2005 May


  • Diffusion magnetic resonance imaging
  • Infarction
  • Spinal cord


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