Spinal cord stimulator for the treatment of central neuropathic pain secondary to cervical syringomyelia: illustrative case.
BACKGROUND: Central neuropathic pain (CNP) of the cervical and/or thoracic spinal cord has many etiologies, both natural and iatrogenic. Frequently, CNP is medically refractory and requires surgical treatment to modulate the perception of pain. Spinal cord stimulation is a modality commonly used in adults to treat this type of refractory pain; however, it is rarely used in the pediatric population.
OBSERVATIONS: The authors reported a case involving a common pediatric condition, Chiari malformation type I with syrinx, that led to a debilitating complex regional pain syndrome. The associated life-altering pain was successfully alleviated following placement of a spinal cord stimulator.
LESSONS: CNP, or the syndromic manifestations of the pain (complex regional pain syndrome), can alter an individual's life in dramatic ways. Spinal cord stimulator placement in carefully selected pediatric patients should be considered in these difficult pain treatment paradigms.
J Neurosurg Case Lessons
Chiari I malformation; central neuropathic pain; cervical syrinx; complex regional pain syndrome; spinal cord stimulator; syringomyelia
Schatmeyer BA, Dodin R, Kinsman M, Garcia D. Spinal cord stimulator for the treatment of central neuropathic pain secondary to cervical syringomyelia: illustrative case. J Neurosurg Case Lessons. 2022;4(6):CASE22226. Published 2022 Aug 8. doi:10.3171/CASE22226