Skip to main content
Log in

Cervical spinal cord compression in hereditary multiple exostoses

Report of a case and a review of the literature

  • Current Problem Case
  • Published:
Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery Aims and scope Submit manuscript


Spinal cord compression is an extremely serious complication of hereditary multiple exostoses (HME). A case of HME with compression of the cervical spinal cord is reported. Complete recovery following surgery was achieved. A review of the relevant literature revealed 51 previous cases of HME with cord/cauda equina compression. Most patients were under 30 years of age with more men affected than women. The family history was positive in 60%. The cervical and thoracic areas were predominantly affected, with the symptoms usually developing slowly. Recovery following surgery is to be expected in the majority of cases. In patients with HME and suffering from neurological symptoms, the possibility of spinal cord compression should be considered. Prompt diagnosis and surgical excision provide the best prognosis.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others


  1. Burr T (1983) Hereditary multiple exostoses with spinal cord compression. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatr 46:96–97

    Google Scholar 

  2. Decker RE, Wei WC (1969) Thoracic cord compression from multiple hereditary exostoses associated with cerebellar astrocytoma. Case report. J Neurosurg 30:310–312

    Google Scholar 

  3. Ferrari G, Taddei L, Vivenza C, Rossi G (1979) Paraparesis in hereditary multiple exostoses: case report. Neurology (Minneap) 29:973–977

    Google Scholar 

  4. Ho SU, Lipton HL (1979) Hereditary multiple exostoses with myelopathy. Arch Neruol 36:174

    Google Scholar 

  5. Jaffe HL (1943) Hereditary multiple exostosis. Arch Pathol 36:335–357

    Google Scholar 

  6. Japanese Orthopedic Association Musculoskeletal Tumor Committee (1992) The incidence of bone tumors in Japan. National Cancer Center, Tokyo

    Google Scholar 

  7. Kawashita S, Miyake Y, Hiramatsu Y, Kodoma H, Inoue M, Murakami M, Sunami Y, Imai T (1978) Paraplegia in hereditary multiple exostosis. Cent Jpn J Orthop Traumatol 21:504–506

    Google Scholar 

  8. LaRocca H, Macnab I (1974) The laminectomy membrane. Studies in its evolution, characteristics, effects and prophylaxis in dogs. J Bone Joint Surg [Br] 56:545–550

    Google Scholar 

  9. Madigan R, Worral T, McClain E (1974) Cervical cord compression in hereditary multiple exostoses. J Bone Joint Surg [Am] 56:401–404

    Google Scholar 

  10. Mikawa Y, Hamagami H, Shikata J, Higashi S, Yamamuro T, Hyon SH, Ikada Y (1986) An experimental study on prevention of postlaminectomy scar formation by the use of new materials. Spine 11:843–846

    Google Scholar 

  11. Omori M, Sakate Y, Tamura Y, Katayama M, Furukawa Y, Saito S (1983) Cervical and compression due to exostosis in a patient with multiple exostosis; a case report. Seikeigeka 34:1354–1358

    Google Scholar 

  12. Reid J (1843) Disease of the spinal cord from an exostosis. Med Sci 3:194–196

    Google Scholar 

  13. Roman G (1978) Hereditary multiple exostoses, a rare cause of spinal cord compression. Spine 3:230–233

    Google Scholar 

  14. Singh DS, Rao SS, Sharma S, Srivastava KK, Yadav SS (1980) Cerivcal cord compression from multiple hereditary exostoses. J Assoc Phys Ind 28:535–537

    Google Scholar 

  15. Slepian A, Hamby WB (1951) Neurologic complications associated with hereditary deforming chondrodysplasia. Review of the literature and a report on two cases occurring in the same family. J Neurosurg 8:529–535

    Google Scholar 

  16. Solomon L (1963) Hereditary multiple exostosis. J Bone Joint Surg [Br] 45:292–304

    Google Scholar 

  17. Solomon L (1964) Hereditary multiple exostosis. Am J Hum Genet 16:351–363

    Google Scholar 

  18. Tully RJ, Pickens J, Oro J, Levine C (1989) Hereditary multiple exostoses and cervical cord compression: CT and MR studies. J Comput Assist Tomogr 13:330–333

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Mikawa, Y., Watanabe, R., Nakashima, Y. et al. Cervical spinal cord compression in hereditary multiple exostoses. Arch Orthop Trauma Surg 116, 112–115 (1997).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: