What is syringomyelia due to blockage of CSF circulation (without fourth ventricular communication)?

Updated: Nov 10, 2017
  • Author: Hassan Ahmad Hassan Al-Shatoury, MD, PhD, MHPE; Chief Editor: Selim R Benbadis, MD  more...
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Representing at least 50% of all cases, this is the most common type of syringomyelia. Obstruction of CSF circulation from the basal posterior fossa to the caudal space may cause syringomyelia of this type. The most common example is Arnold-Chiari malformation, which is also associated with communicating syringomyelia. Other causes include the following:

  • Basal arachnoiditis (postinfectious, inflammatory, postirradiation, blood in subarachnoid space) [1]

  • Basilar impression or invagination

  • Meningeal carcinomatosis

  • Pathological masses (arachnoid cysts, rheumatoid arthritis pannus, occipital encephalocele, tumors)

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