Pediatric cervical epidural abscess in a 4-year-old patient: a case-based update

  • R. AhluwaliaEmail author
  • A. Scherer
Case-Based Update



The purpose of this study was to review a case comprised of a cervical spinal epidural abscess, cervical and thoracic paraspinous edema, and widening of the right thoracic neural foramen secondary to a phlegmon.


We reviewed the case of a spinal epidural abscess managed medically in a 4-year-old male and performed a review of the literature with 15 other cases that have previously been reported.


The current mainstay of treatment is largely variant but generally falls into a laminectomy-based surgical approach or longstanding antibiotics. Our review of the literature concluded that there are currently no clear guidelines established to recommend treatment, and current practice is largely based on the discretion of the pediatric neurosurgeon.


Based on the literature review, and our personal case illustration, we conclude that an antibiotic-based treatment is a valid approach for therapy if initiated promptly in a pediatric patient with no neurological deficit.


Spinal epidural abscess Phlegmon Epidural laminectomy Epidural space 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Florida State College of MedicineOrlandoUSA
  2. 2.Department of Neurological SurgeryNemours Children’s HospitalOrlandoUSA

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