Purpose: Cavernous hemangiomas with a spinal epidural location are very uncommon vascular tumors in contrast to those in the vertebral body. The purpose of this study was to describe the radiologic findings, focusing on the MR studies, of spinal epidural cavernous hemangiomas.
Method: Five pathologically proven cases of spinal epidural cavernous hemangioma were retrospectively reviewed. MR (n = 5) and CT (n = 1) were evaluated.
Results: The level was thoracic (n = 4) or lumbosacral (n = 1). The mass was located in the epidural space and showed paravertebral extension in all cases. It showed a lobulated contour in all cases and encircled the spinal cord partially with a larger posterior (n = 3) or anterior (n = 1) component in four cases. In all cases, the mass showed high signal intensity on T2-weighted images and homogeneous, strong enhancement. Adjacent bony erosion (n = 5) and intervertebral neural foraminal widening (n = 4) were common.
Conclusion: Spinal epidural cavernous hemangioma shows characteristic MR findings of a lobulated contoured epidural mass partially encircling the spinal cord with a larger posterior component in the spinal canal, high signal intensity on T2-wieghted images, and homogeneous, strong enhancement.