2016 Volume 3 Issue 3 Pages 91-95
We present a rare case of spontaneous hemorrhage of a spinal ependymoma in the filum terminale presenting with acute cauda equina syndrome. A 16-year-old male presented with a sudden onset of severe back pain that began 10 days before hospitalization. This symptom progressed, followed by development of decreased sensation in the lower extremities, bladder dysfunction, and motor weakness that advanced to an inability to walk. Spinal magnetic resonance imaging revealed a hemorrhagic mass from Th12 to L2 and L4 to L5, and clinical signs indicated acute cauda equina compression. One day after admission to the hospital, emergency surgery was performed. A spinal tumor in the conus portion with a spinal subarachnoid hemorrhage was seen. Gross total excision of the massive hematoma mixed with the underlying tumor was performed. Pathological findings of the excised tumor demonstrated a WHO Grade II cellular ependymoma of the non-myxopapillary type. The patient made a significant recovery. The ability to walk was restored, and impaired bladder function improved at follow-up. Early diagnosis and suitable treatment are associated with a more favorable outcome.