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Funicular pain: a case report of intermittent claudication induced by cervical cord compression – Back Pain Doctor Harley Street

Funicular pain: a case report of intermittent claudication induced by cervical cord compression


Neurogenic origin intermittent claudication is typically caused by lumbar spinal canal stenosis. However, there are few reports of intermittent claudication caused by cervical spinal cord compression.

Case presentation:

We present the case of a 75-year-old woman who presented with intermittent claudication. She had a history of lumbar spinal fusion surgery, but there was no sign of lumbar spinal stenosis. She also reported bilateral thigh pain on cervical extension. Electromyogram (EMG), posture-induced test, myelogram, and post-myelogram dynamic computed tomography (CT) were performed. Myelography and post-myelogram dynamic CT in the cervical extension position showed narrowing of the subarachnoid space; the patient reported pain in the front of the both thigh during the procedure. We performed an electromyogram (EMG), which implied neurogenic changes below the C5 level. Based on these results, we diagnosed cervical spinal cord compression and underwent laminoplasty at C4-6 including dome-like laminectomy, which significantly relieved the thigh pain and enabled her to walk for 40 minutes.


In this case, funicular pain presented as leg pain, but was resolved by the decompression of the cervical spinal cord. Funicular pain has various characteristics without any upper extreme symptom. This often leads to errors in diagnosis and treatment. We avoid the misdiagnosis by evaluating post-myelogram dynamic CT compared between flexion and extension. In cases of intermittent claudication, clinicians should keep in mind that cervical cord compression could be a potential cause.


Case report; Cervical spondylotic myelopathy; Funicular pain; Laminoplasty; Post-myelogram dynamic computed tomography; Tract pain.

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