Donald Corenman, MD, DC
Post count: 8436

Your father has symptoms that could be from spinal cord injury. The sharp electrical like pains that radiate down the arms and spine could be L’hermitte’s sign- lightening type pain that occurs from cord compression.

Bowel and bladder failure has a long differential but cord injury is one of them. Can he walk and if so, is his gait normal?

The signs of spinal cord injury are hyperreflexia, Hoffman’s sign, clonus, problems with balance in lower extremities and problems with fine motor control in upper extremities (zipping a zipper, picking up a coin, handwriting changes, putting a key in a lock). A good and thorough physical examination can reveal these signs and help with diagnosis.

The MRI notes a signal change in the cord from C3 to C6. This could be from cervical stenosis and myelopathy (see website) or from a process within the cord itself. A careful radiologist can determine what the source of the signal change is.

If this is injury from cord compression, he will need surgery but further information regarding the signal change needs to be completed before a decision can be made. Get a consult with a spine surgeon.

Dr. Corenman