Symptomatic hematoma of cervical ligamentum flavum: case report.

Hsien Chih Chen*, Peng Wei Hsu, Chin Yew Lin, Wen Ching Tzaan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


STUDY DESIGN: A case of symptomatic hematoma of cervical ligamentum flavum. OBJECTIVE: To report the first ligamentum flavum hematoma in the cervical spine and review the reported cases. SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA: A herniated nucleus pulposis, spondylosis, epidural hematoma or abscess, neoplasm, or some pathology of the ligamentum flavum, such as hypertrophy, ossification, or calcification, are the most common causes of spinal cord and nerve root compression. A ligamentum flavum hematoma has also been reported as a cause of compression of the cauda equina and lumbar nerve roots but has never been found in the cervical spine. METHODS: A 72-year-old man presented with left upper arm pain and left hemiparesis following traditional massage therapy. Admission magnetic resonance images showed a posterior oval-shaped mass that was continuous with the ligamentum flavum at C3-C4 level. RESULTS: A C3-C4 laminectomy for decompression and resection of the lesion was performed. One year after surgery, the patient remained neurologically intact and symptom-free. CONCLUSIONS: Hematoma of the ligamentum flavum occurring in the cervical spine has never been reported previously. Repeated trivial injury on a degenerative ligamentum flavum might be the leading predisposing factor. Spine surgeons should be aware of a hematoma in the ligamentum flavum as a possible cause of spinal cord or root compression, especially in the mobile cervical and lumbar spine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E489-491
Issue number16
StatePublished - 15 08 2005
Externally publishedYes


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