Cervical Spine Deformities in Children With Rhizomelic Chondrodysplasia Punctata

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Abstract

Background:

Cervical spine deformity in rhizomelic chondrodysplasia punctata (RCDP) has been described with different findings reported in the literature. However, available literature provides limited data from a few cases with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the cervical spine. Our report describes the MRI findings in a group of children with RCDP, aiming to reach a better understanding of this pathology.

Methods:

An Institutional Review Board-approved RCDP Registry was created at our institution with the goal of identifying pertinent medical issues over the lifespan of individuals with RCDP. Records of children within the registry were evaluated, and magnetic resonance images obtained between 2004 and 2015, were available for review. The levels of spinal canal stenosis were recorded and the severity of the stenosis was decided based on adults’ parameters. Cord compression and myelomalacia were confirmed on the axial images. Sagittal lumbar spine magnetic resonance images were also evaluated when available, and the presence of tethered cord and fatty filum was recorded.

Results:

Twenty-six children (15 boys and 11 girls) were identified in the RCDP Registry. Eleven children (6 boys and 5 girls) had sagittal MRI of the cervical spine available for review. Age at the time of MRI study was variable (1 wk to 32 mo). All patients except 1 had stenosis of the cervical spinal canal. Myelomalacia of the cord was noted only in this patient.

Conclusions:

This study suggests that, in children with RCDP, cervical spinal stenosis and cord compression are a real risk, and children with this diagnosis should have monitoring for these issues. Tethered cord is also a possible finding that needs to be evaluated. Full sagittal spine MRI is necessary to detect the possible deformities at the cervical and lumbar levels.

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