Journal of Hong Kong College of Radiologists

Volume 5 Number 2, 2002

Idiopathic Spinal Epidural Lipomatosis

RKT Lee,1 LF Chau,1 KS Yu,2 CW Lai1
1Department of Radiology, North District Hospital, 2Department of Orthopaedics & Traumatology, North District Hospital, Hong Kong

Spinal epidural lipomatosis is most often associated with exogenous steroid therapy and endocrinopathy. Idiopathic spinal epidural lipomatosis is a rare disease. Obesity may be associated with this condition. We report the case of a patient with persistent back pain after an accidental fall from height. Excessive fat deposition was found in the lumbar spinal canal on magnetic resonance imaging. Other possible causes of back pain, including spondylolysis with nerve root impingement and prolapsed intervertebral discs were excluded by injection tests and discograms. Clinical and pathologic features of idiopathic spinal epidural lipomatosis, along with treatment options are discussed. (J HK Coll Radiol 2002;5:105-108)

Key Words: Lipomatosis, Magnetic resonance imaging, Obesity

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