Shortly after severe blunt chest trauma, a young man experienced neurological symptoms suggestive of a spinal cord lesion at the lower thoracic level. The symptoms resolved at first, but then recurred 3 years later and progressed slowly. Neurological workup failed to define the cause until a thoracic aortogram showed an aneurysm in the middle portion of the descending aorta in close proximity to a vessel supplying the anterior spinal artery. After the operative repair with precautions taken to avoid further neurological injury, the neurological deficit resolved partially. Because of the potential for symptomatic spinal cord ischemia resulting from lesions of the aorta, angiographic delineation of the spinal cord blood supply is valuable in planning operative repair.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine