Analysis of spinal angiograms that missed diagnosis of spinal vascular diseases with venous hypertensive myelopathy: the non-technical factors



Spinal DSA is the “gold standard” technique to identify the spinal vascular diseases with venous hypertensive myelopathy (VHM). However, sometimes spinal DSA can find nothing in patients with confirmed spinal vascular anomalies. Many of the reasons are avoidable technical factors. Nevertheless, there are also some non-technical factors. The objective of this study was to identify the non-technical factors.


The cause of the missed findings was found as the non-technical factors in 14 patients. The clinical records and radiological findings of the 14 patients were reviewed.


The so-called standard spinal angiography can found nothing in the 14 patients. Additional angiography was performed and detected the lesions. Eight patients were found lesions supplied by carotid arteries or iliac arteries, including 2 cranial DAVF with internal carotid artery blood supply, 3 cranial DAVF with external carotid artery blood supply and 2 pelvic AVF with internal iliac artery blood supply and 1 pelvic AVM with internal iliac artery blood supply. Six patients were caused by stenosis of spinal draining vein, including 3 stenosis of the third lumbar veins and 3 stenosis of left renal veins combined with the reno–spinal trunk.


In order to avoid the missed findings of spinal vascular diseases with VHM, the technical factors should be reduced by performing a rigorous comprehensive angiography. To reduce the non-technical factors, the angiography of the internal iliac artery, the carotid artery systems and spinal draining veins should be performed in some special cases if the routine spinal angiography can find nothing.

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Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3



Arteriovenous fistula;


Dural arteriovenous fistula;


Venous hypertensive myelopathy


Arteriovenous malformation


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Correspondence to Lianting Ma.

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Xie, T., Pan, L., Yang, M. et al. Analysis of spinal angiograms that missed diagnosis of spinal vascular diseases with venous hypertensive myelopathy: the non-technical factors. Eur Spine J 29, 2441–2448 (2020).

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  • Myelopathy
  • Venous hypertension
  • Spinal angiography
  • Spinal cord