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Infantile Lumbosacral Spinal Subdural Abscess With Sacral Dermal Sinus Tract

Park, Seoung Woo, MD*; Yoon, Soo Han, MD; Cho, Ki Hong, MD; Shin, Yong Sam, MD; Ahn, Young Hwan, MD

doi: 10.1097/01.brs.0000251012.37188.37
Case Report

Study Design. Clinical case report of a spinal subdural abscess in an infant presenting with sacral dermal sinus tract (DST).

Objectives. To suggest that sacral DST with caudal direction may require surgical resection as early as possible.

Summary of Background Data. DST may induce the formation of a spinal abscess. However, it is sometimes difficult to decide on early surgical resection for DST, especially in cases that are located at a lower level than the lumbar spine and directed caudally that is not accompanied by cerebrospinal fluid leakage.

Methods. A 9-month-old girl was transferred due to intermittent fever and vomiting, with the midline sinus of the lower back at the second sacral spinal level. She showed mild tenderness of the lower back and slight weakness of both lower extremities with increased residual urine volume of the bladder. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed that the low-lying sacral DST traced into the subdural space with caudal orientation, and the presence of extensive subdural spinal abscess from the first lumbar spine to the fourth sacrum.

Results. Emergency resection of the sacral DST was performed after laminotomy from the first lumbar spine to the second sacrum, and the subdural spinal abscess was also surgically removed. After 8 weeks of intravenous antibiotic treatment, she showed no neurologic deficit and no evidence of residual abscess on MRI.

Conclusion. We suggest that even low-lying sacral DST may require surgical resection as early as possible because it may result in indolent and extensive spinal abscesses.

An infant girl presented with extensive spinal subdural abscess and dermal sinus tract that was caudal-oriented on the lower sacral level. From this case, we suggest that even low-lying sacral dermal sinus tract may require surgical resection as early as possible because it could induce indolent extensive spinal abscesses.

From the *Department of Neurosurgery, Kangwon National University College of Medicine, Chunchon, Korea; and the †Department of Neurosurgery, Ajou University School of Medicine, Suwon, Korea.

Acknowledgment date: May 4, 2006. First revision date: July 22, 2006. Acceptance date: August 22, 2006.

The manuscript submitted does not contain information about medical device(s)/drug(s).

No funds were received in support of this work. No benefits in any form have been or will be received from a commercial party related directly or indirectly to the subject of this manuscript.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Soo Han Yoon, MD, Department of Neurosurgery, Ajou University School of Medicine, San 5, Wonchon-dong, Yongtong-gu, Suwon, Korea; E-mail:,

© 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.