Brown-Sequard Syndrome

Contents

What is Brown-Séquard Syndrome?
Is there any treatment?
What is the prognosis?
What is Brown-Sequard Syndrome?

Brown-Séquard syndrome is classified as an incomplete spinal cord injury which presents itself by clinical symptoms which reflect hemisection of the spinal cord (cutting or severe damage to the spinal cord in half on one or the other side). A Brown-Sequard injury to the spinal cord is diagnosed by symptoms presenting motor (muscle) paralysis on the same (ipsilateral) side as the lesion and deficits in pain and temperature sensation on the opposite (contralateral) side of the lesion. This diagnosis is called ipsilateral hemiplegia and includes contralateral pain and temperature sensation deficits. The loss of sensation on the opposite side of the lesion occurs because the nerve fibers of the spinothalamic tract (which carry information about pain and temperature) crossover once they meet the spinal cord from the peripheries.

The most common cause of Brown-Séquard syndrome is penetrating trauma such as a gunshot wound or stab wound to the spinal cord. This may be seen most often in the cervical (neck) or thoracic spine.

Is there any treatment?

Generally treatment for individuals with BSS focuses on the underlying cause of the disorder. Early treatment with high-dose steroids may be beneficial in many cases. Other treatment is symptomatic and supportive.

What is the prognosis?

The prognosis for individuals with BSS varies depending on the cause of the disorder. More than 90% of people regain bladder & bowel control and the ability to walk.

 

Contents

What is Brown-Sequard Syndrome?
Is there any treatment?
What is the prognosis?