Skip to main content
Log in

Thoracolumbar intervertebral disc calcifications in an 8-year-old boy: case report and review of the literature

  • Original Paper
  • Published:
European Journal of Pediatrics Aims and scope Submit manuscript

Abstract

An 8-year-old boy presented himself with a nontraumatic acute onset of thoracolumbar pain with an antalgic scoliosis. His past medical history did not reveal any infectious disorder. The back pain kept him from sleep and sports. Imaging revealed calcified intervertebral discs from thoracic intervertebral disc 10–11 to lumbar disc 2–3, with compression of the 11th thoracic root. Conservative treatment with analgesia, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and rest reduced the symptoms within a few days. The boy became asymptomatic within 2 weeks. Magnetic resonance imaging changes diminished in 2 months. Intervertebral disc calcification in children is a rare benign disorder which mostly affects the cervical spine. This is the first case, to our knowledge, of symptomatic intervertebral disc calcification involving the lumbar spine up to lumbar disc 2–3.

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.

Fig 1
Fig 2
Fig 3
Fig. 4

Similar content being viewed by others

References

  1. Sandstrom C (1951) Calcifications of the intervertebral discs and the relationship between various types of calcifications in the soft tissues of the body. Acta Radiol 36(3):217–233

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Melnick JC, Silverman FN (1963) Intervertebral disk calcification in childhood. Radiology 80:399–408

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  3. Herring JA, Hensinger RN (1988) Cervical disc calcification. J Pediatr Orthop 8(5):613–616

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  4. Gerlach R, Zimmermann M, Kellermann S et al (2001) Intervertebral disc calcification in childhood—a case report and review of the literature. Acta Neurochir (Wien) 143(1):89–93

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Mikity VG, Esenbarger J (1965) Intervertebral disk calcification in children. Am J Roentgenol Radium Ther Nucl Med. 95:200–202

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  6. Swischuk LE, Jubang M, Jadhav SP (2008) Calcific discitis in children: vertebral body involvement (possible insight into etiology). Emerg Radiol 15(6):427–430

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  7. Calderone M, Severino M, Pluchinotta FR et al (2009) Idiopathic intervertebral disc calcification in childhood. Arch Dis Child 94:233–234

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  8. Ventura N, Huguet R, Salvador A et al (1995) Intervertebral disc calcification in childhood. Int Orthop 19(5):291–294

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  9. Bagatur AE, Zorer G, Centel T (2001) Natural history of paediatric intervertebral disc calcification. Arch Orthop Trauma Surg 121(10):601–603

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. Girodias JB, Azouz EM, Marton D (1991) Intervertebral disk space calcification. A report of 51 children with a review of the literature. Pediatr Radiol 21(8):541–546

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  11. Dhammi IK, Arora A, Monga J (2002) Calcified thoracic intervertebral disc at two levels as a cause of mid-back pain in a child: a case report. J Orthop Sci 7:587–589

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  12. Mac-Thiong JM, Leduc S, Marton D et al (2004) Herniation of a calcified cervical disc into the foramen transversarium in an 8-year-old child. Spine 29(16):349–352 15

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Sonnabend DH et al (1982) Intervertebral disc calcification syndromes in children. J Bone Jt Surg Br 64(1):25–31

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Dai L-Y, Hua YE, Qian Q-R (2004) The natural history of cervical disc calcification in children. J Bone Jt Surg Am 86-A(7):1467–1472

    Google Scholar 

  15. Wells RG, Sty JR (1985) Comparitive imaging: disk calcification in childhood. Clin Nucl Med 10(11):821–822

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  16. Barrett MO, Anderson JT, Rao B et al (2008) Multilevel pediatric cervicothoracic intervertebral disc calcifications. Am J Orthop 37(7):E126–E128

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Pierre Moens.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Spapens, N., Wouters, C. & Moens, P. Thoracolumbar intervertebral disc calcifications in an 8-year-old boy: case report and review of the literature. Eur J Pediatr 169, 577–580 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00431-009-1076-z

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00431-009-1076-z

Keywords

Navigation