About arachnoiditis

What is arachnoiditis?

Arachnoiditis is a pain disorder caused by the inflammation of the arachnoid, one of the membranes that surround and protect the nerves of the spinal cord. It is characterized by severe stinging, "burning pain", and neurological problems.

What are the symptoms for arachnoiditis?

Urinary symptoms are urgency symptom was found in the arachnoiditis condition

Your symptoms depend on which nerves or areas of the spinal cord are damaged by inflammation. Arachnoiditis often causes intense Pain in the injured area, which can include the lower back, legs, buttocks, or feet.

The Pain may feel like an electric shock or a Burning sensation. It can spread across your back and down your legs. The Pain may get worse when you move.

Other common symptoms of arachnoiditis include:

  • numbness, tingling, or a pins-and-needles feeling
  • crawling sensation on the skin, as if ants are walking up and down your back
  • muscle cramps or spasms
  • weakness
  • trouble walking
  • severe headaches
  • vision problems
  • hearing problems
  • dizziness
  • nausea
  • bladder or bowel problems
  • trouble sleeping
  • fatigue
  • joint pain
  • loss of balance
  • sexual dysfunction
  • depression
  • ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • inability to sweat normally (anhidrosis)

In the most severe cases, the legs can become paralyzed.

What are the causes for arachnoiditis?

Arachnoiditis often starts after surgery, injury, or epidural injection into the spine.

Causes include:

  • epidural steroid injections used to treat disk problems and other causes of back pain
  • epidural anesthesia, which is often used during labor and delivery
  • chemotherapy drugs, such as methotrexate (Trexall), that are injected into the spine
  • injury or complications during spinal surgery
  • spinal cord injury
  • bleeding in the spine due to injury or surgery
  • spinal tap (lumbar puncture), which is a test that removes a sample of cerebrospinal fluid from your spine to look for infections, cancer, and other nervous system conditions
  • myelogram, which is an imaging test that uses contrast dye and X-rays or CT scans to look for problems in your spinal cord
  • disk prolapse, which occurs when the inner part of a disk in your spinal cord bulges out
  • meningitis, which is a viral or bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the membranes around the brain and spinal cord
  • tuberculosis, which is a bacterial infection that can affect the lungs, brain, and spine

What are the treatments for arachnoiditis?

There is no cure for arachnoiditis. Treatment options for arachnoiditis are similar to those for other chronic pain conditions. Most treatments focus on relieving pain and improving symptoms that impair daily activities. Often, health care professionals recommend a program of pain management, physiotherapy, exercise, and psychotherapy. Surgery for arachnoiditis is controversial because outcomes can be poor and provide only short-term relief. Clinical trials of steroid injections and electrical stimulation are needed to determine whether those treatments are effective.

What are the risk factors for arachnoiditis?

Arachnoiditis is a chronic inflammation of the arachnoid and subarachnoid space.

  • The arachnoid is one of the meninges that plays the role of protecting the brain and spinal cord.
  • Thickening of arachnoid mater, Dural adhesions, scar tissue formation, and often clumping of nerve roots anatomical developments of the condition.
  • Possible causes of arachnoiditis are traumatic injuries, prior spinal surgeries, infections, neurotoxic agents, or irritants, oil-based myelographic contrast agents, and epidural hemorrhages.
  • The most common symptom is back pain, which progresses to radicular pain and sensory deficits.
  • It may also be a present weakness, gait imbalance, and neurogenic bowel or bladder.

Risk factors for arachnoiditis are:

  • Brisk movements or over-stressing exercise that applies more pressure on the backbone may collectively lead to injury, over a period, to the spine or vertebrae increasing the risk of inflammation of the arachnoid mater.
  • Malignant cancers of the brain such as glioma and astrocytoma, and cancers such as breast cancer, lung cancer, lymphoma, and melanoma.
  • Steroids and anesthetic agents that enter arachnoid mater or subarachnoid space.
  • Exposure of arachnoid and subarachnoid space to neurotoxic agents and neuroirritants.
  • Events, procedures, and diseases that weaken immunity, for example, HIV-AIDS, Organ transplantation, etc.
  • Infections can spread to the brain and spinal cord.

Back pain that is followed by radicular pain and then sensory defect,Weakness,Gait imbalance, as well as possible neurogenic bowel or bladder are less common,Urinary symptoms are urgency, increased frequency, and less commonly, incontinence
Arachnoid membrane swells and causes pain
Pain management,Physiotherapy,Exercise,Psychotherapy

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