Spinal metastases

Jonathan H. Sherman, Dawit Aregawi, Mark E. Shaffrey, David Schiff

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Spinal cord metastases are a common complication of systemic malignancy, most commonly from lung, breast, and prostate cancer. Patients may present with a variety of symptoms, most notably pain and weakness. The ultimate goals in managing these patients include maximizing neurologic function, length of survival, and quality of life. These goals can best be reached via early, accurate diagnosis followed by the appropriate treatment for a particular patient. Pharmacotherapy plays an important role in treatment for these patients not only for analgesia but also for treatment of edema with corticosteroids and adjuvant treatment with chemotherapy. The patient's prognosis defines the appropriate treatment for spinal metastasis, with the goal of maintaining quality of life. Radiation therapy continues to be a primary treatment option and a variety of new techniques are now available to maximize the radiation dose to the tumor while minimizing the dose to the spinal cord. Surgical resection and spinal stabilization also have critical roles in the treatment armamentarium. The combination of these modalities will continue to be a vital component in the treatment of metastatic spinal cord disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCancer Neurology In Clinical Practice
Subtitle of host publicationNeurologic Complications of Cancer and Its Treatment: Second Edition
PublisherHumana Press
Pages163-179
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781588299833
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

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