10 Myelopathy Symptoms

By sarah-jane
Reviewed: dr. vanta
Article Sources Article Sources
  • 1. 'Myelopathy.' John Hopkins Medicine, www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/myelopathy
  • 2. 'Myelopathy | Pain Management.' Intermountainhealthcare.org, intermountainhealthcare.org/services/pain-management/conditions/back-and-spine-pain/myelopathy/
  • 3. Patel, Nilesh M. 'Cervical Spondylotic Myelopathy (Spinal Cord Compression).' American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/diseases--conditions/cervical-spondylotic-myelopathy-spinal-cord-compression/
  • 4. McCartney, Sarah, et al. 'Cervical radiculopathy and cervical myelopathy: diagnosis and management in primary care.' British Journal of General Practice, vol. 68, no. 666, Jan. 2018, pp. 44-46
  • 5. EBARA, SOHEI, et al. 'Myelopathy Hand Characterized by Muscle Wasting.' Spine, vol. 13, no. 7, 1988, pp. 785-791, doi:10.1097/00007632-198807000-00013
  • 6. 'Myelopathy.' Cedars-Sinai, 9 2020, www.cedars-sinai.org/health-library/diseases-and-conditions/m/myelopathy.html
  • 7. Menon, Nitin, et al. 'Prevalence of depression, fatigue, and sleep disturbances in patients with myelopathy: Their relation with functional and neurological recovery.' The Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine, vol. 39, no. 6, Nov. 2016, pp. 620-626
  • 8. He, Shisheng, et al. 'Improvement of Sexual Function in Male Patients Treated Surgically for Cervical Spondylotic Myelopathy.' Spine, vol. 31, no. 1, 2006, pp. 33-36
  • 9. 'Neurogenic Bowel.' Baylor College of Medicine, www.bcm.edu/research/labs-and-centers/research-centers/center-for-research-on-women-with-disabilities/a-to-z-directory/bowel-health/neurogenic-bowel
Medical Expert Medical Expert

Myelopathy is a condition caused by compression of or damage to the nerves of the spinal cord. There are various ways the spinal cord can be damaged, including injury, congenital or degenerative disease, a herniated disc and various autoimmune or neurological conditions.

There are several types of myelopathy, which are named according to the part of the spine that is affected. Cervical myelopathy is in the neck, thoracic myelopathy is in the mid-part of the spine and lumbar myelopathy is in the lower spine. Myelopathy symptoms vary depending on the area that's affected.1‘Myelopathy.’ John Hopkins Medicine, www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/myelopathy


Pain is a common symptom of myelopathy. Pain or discomfort typically occurs at or below the area that is compressed or constricted, and it may worsen over time. Common painful areas include the neck, back, arms and legs. People may experience a sharp shooting sensation of pain down their back or limbs.

Myelopathy cannot be permanently healed in some cases, though there are several treatments that may help to manage the pain. Treatments vary depending on the exact location of the spinal cord damage and the underlying condition but may include oral pain relief medication, surgery, braces, spinal injections and physical therapy.2‘Myelopathy | Pain Management.’ Intermountainhealthcare.org, intermountainhealthcare.org/services/pain-management/conditions/back-and-spine-pain/myelopathy/


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