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Spine Surgery Guide

Causes of a Spinal Tumor

Any type of tumor may occur in the spine, including:

  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Myeloma
    A small number of spinal tumors occur in the nerves of the spinal cord itself. Most often these are ependymomas and other gliomas.

    Tumors that start in spinal tissue are called primary spinal tumors. Tumors that spread to the spine from some other place (metatastasis) are called secondary spinal tumors. The cause of primary spinal tumors is unknown. Some primary spinal tumors occur with genetic defects. A spinal tumor is much less common than a primary brain tumor.

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Symptoms may include:
  • Abnormal sensations, loss of sensation:
    o Especially in the legs (may be in the knee or ankle, with or without shooting pain down the leg)
    o May worsen
  • Back pain:
    o Gets worse over time
    o In any area -- middle or low back are most common
    o Is usually severe and not relieved by pain medication
    o Is worse when lying down
    o Is worse with strain, cough, sneeze
    o May extend to the hip, leg, or feet (or arms), or all extremities
    o May stay in the spine
  • Cold sensation of the legs, cool fingers or hands, or coolness of other areas
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Inability to keep from leaking urine (urinary incontinence)
  • Muscle contractions or spasms (fasciculations)
  • Muscle function loss
  • Muscle weakness (decreased muscle strength not due to exercise):
    o Causes falls
    o Especially in the legs
    o Makes walking difficult
    o May get worse (progressive)

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This information is not designed to replace a physician's independent judgment about the appropriateness or risks of a procedure for a given patient.
Always consult your doctor about your medical conditions or back problem. We Care Health Services does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Use of the site is conditional upon your acceptance of our Terms and Conditions is a member of the medical tourism information network

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