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Have spina bifida occulta. Experiencing numbness all over body. Symptom of a tethered cord?

Answered by
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Dr. G.Srinivasan

Urologist

Practicing since :1991

Answered : 1414 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 7 Feb 2013 in Brain and Spine
Question: I have a sacral dimple that has been also called a spina bifida occulta. I am now 55 and have been have been experiencing left sided numbness any time I curl up in a fetal postion. The numbness extends from my face to my leg and will last for several hours. It is especially pronounced after sex if I pull my legs up and my back is also curled up also, again in a fetal like position. Could this be a symptom of a tethered cord?
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Answered by Dr. G.Srinivasan 5 hours later
Hi
Welcome to XXXXXXX
The numbness in the legs is explained by the spina bifida and the associated tethered cord.
But the face symptoms are not explained by this.
A detailed neurological examination is a must to look for problem at the cervical cord and can be done at the time you XXXXXXX your neurologist during your next visit for parkinson's.
An MRI may be necessary if not done already.
Urgent opinion is needed when
1. Bowel and bladder are out of control.
2. Numbness becomes worse.
Hope this helps. Kindly write back for doubts if any.
Best regards
DR GS

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. G.Srinivasan 2 hours later
I have never been diagnosed with a tethered cord. My question was, could my symptoms be that of a thethered cord since I was diagnosed with a spins bifida occulta as a child. I recently had an MRI of my C-spine which was negative. I had fallen down a flight of stairs about 3 months ago and hurt my neck.
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Answered by Dr. G.Srinivasan 1 hour later
Tethered cord is quite possible. The MRI which was done , if it had covered the sacral cord also, can give a clue.
But since the symptoms are from the face to the legs, one needs to think of a common cause like cervical spondylitis or a minor form of seizure disorder.
Neurology opinion is worthwhile, as you have symptoms lasting hours.
Best regards
DR GS

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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