TETHERED CORD SYNDROME

Tethered Cord Syndrome

Introduction 

Tethered Cord Syndrome is a rare disorder that occurs when the spinal cord is attached to the dura (outermost membrane of the brain) or the bones or soft tissue of the spine. Although tethered cord syndrome can occur in any individual, it is most commonly diagnosed in babies and growing children, where the growth of their spinal vertebrae have outpaced the growth of their spinal cord. The condition restricts the movement of the spinal cord, which in turn can lead to serious medical complications. 

According to recent research, its incidence is 0.025% of all live births. (1) So if you suffer with this get in contact with Clinic 27 today. 

Symptoms of Tethered Cord Syndrome 

Patients with Tethered Cord Syndrome (TCS) usually experience gastrointestinal, neurological, and autonomic problems, leading to a wide range of symptoms, including pain, weakness, numbness, paralysis, and problems with bowel and bladder control. In severe cases, it can also cause deformities of the spine. (2) 

Causes of Tethered Cord Syndrome 

The exact cause of TSC is not fully understood, but it is thought to be caused by abnormal development of the spinal cord during pregnancy and combination of genetic and environmental factors. Additionally, people can develop this condition after spinal surgery. (3)  

Possible Complications  

TCS can also result in the development of cysts or tumours along the spinal cord. It is important to be aware of the potential long-term effects. If left untreated, TCS can lead to irreversible damage to the spinal cord. In some cases, it can even be fatal. Early diagnosis and treatment are essential for preventing serious complications. 

Diagnosis  

The diagnosis of tethered cord syndrome is usually done by doing a clinical examination and ordering some investigations. The investigation techniques that can be used to diagnose TCS, including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), and myelography. 

Treatment Options  

While there is no cure for TCS, it can be treated with surgery. The goal of surgery is to release the cord from the surrounding tissue, thus relieving pressure and allowing the cord to move freely.  

Surgery is often recommended for patients with symptomatic TCS, as it can help to release the tether and prevent further damage to the spinal cord. In some cases, physical therapy or medications may also be prescribed to relieve pain and improve mobility. With proper treatment and care, most people with TCS can lead normal, healthy lives. 

Chiropractic care is a holistic approach to health that focuses on restoring alignment to the spine and nervous system. Chiropractic adjustments can assist in reducing pressure on the spinal cord and improving nerve function, in addition to relieving pain by releasing tension in muscles and joints.  

One of the chiropractic treatment modalities that has gained much traction in coping with the often excruciating symptoms of TCS is Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP). CBP is a scientifically backed and researched method of chiropractic care that focuses on correcting the posture and alignment of the spine, which in turn offers a multitude of benefits, including pain relief, improved nerve function, and increased overall wellness. 

Relief for Patients 

There are several ways to relieve the symptoms of TCS, including avoiding tight clothing or belts around the waist, maintaining good posture, exercising regularly, and getting your spine regularly adjusted by a chiropractor. 

Conclusion 

Tethered cord syndrome can cause a broad range of symptoms, varying in degrees of severity. While there is no one-size-fits-all treatment plan for it, chiropractic care has proven to be an effective, non-invasive way to reverse or heal the condition in many individuals. If you or someone you know suffers from tethered cord syndrome, get in touch with Clinic 27 and let one of our skilled chiropractors set you on the path to optimum wellness and a better quality of life. 

 

References: 

  1. Bhimani AD, Selner AN, Patel JB, Hobbs JG, Esfahani DR, Behbahani M, et al. Pediatric tethered cord release: an epidemiological and postoperative complication analysis. Journal of Spine Surgery [Internet]. 2019 Sep [cited 2022 Apr 23];5(3):337–50. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6787363/#:~:text=Tethered%20cord%20syndrome%20(TCS)%20is,births%20(1%2D5)
  2. ‌Tethered Spinal Cord – Seattle Children’s [Internet]. Seattle Children’s Hospital. 2016 [cited 2022 Apr 23]. Available from: https://www.seattlechildrens.org/conditions/tethered-spinal-cord/ 
  3. ‌Tethered Spinal Cord Syndrome – Causes, Diagnosis and Treatments [Internet]. Aans.org. 2022 [cited 2022 Apr 23]. Available from: https://www.aans.org/en/Patients/Neurosurgical-Conditions-and-Treatments/Tethered-Spinal-Cord-Syndrome 

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