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Abstract #3447

Spinal cord neurodegeneration rostral and caudal to a degenerative cervical myelopathy (DCM): a quantitative MRI study

Kevin Vallotton1, Gergely David1, Armin Curt1, Michael Fehlings2, Claudia A. M. Gandini Wheeler-Kingshott3,4,5, Rebecca S. Samson6, Julien Cohen-Adad7, Muhammad Ali Akbar2, Patrick Freund1,8,9, and Maryam Seif1
1Spinal Cord Injury Center, University Hospital Balgrist, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland, Zuerich, Switzerland, 2University of Toronto Spine Program and Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Toronto, ON, Canada, 3NMR Research Unit, Queen Square MS Centre, Department of Neuroinflammation, UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology, Faculty of Brain Sciences, University College London (UCL), London, United Kingdom, 4Department of Brain and Behavioural Sciences, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy, Pavia, Italy, 5Brain Connectivity Center Research Department, IRCCS Mondino Foundation, Pavia, Italy, 6Queen Square MS Centre, UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology, Faculty of Brain Sciences, London, United Kingdom, London, United Kingdom, 7Functional Neuroimaging Unit, CRIUGM, University of Montreal, Montreal, QC, Canada, Montreal, QC, Canada, 8Department of Neurophysics, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig, Germany, 9Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, UCL Institute of Neurology, London, United Kingdom

Evidence suggests that degenerative cervical myelopathy (DCM) induces neurodegeneration along the entire spinal cord, i.e. rostral and caudal to the compression level. To investigate macro- and microstructural changes along the spinal cord, we applied high-resolution T2*- and diffusion-weighted MRI at both cervical and lumbar cord levels in mild to moderate DCM patients and healthy controls. This study shows that tissue-specific spinal cord neurodegeneration is evident rostral and caudal to the compression site in DCM with mild or moderate symptoms and that the extent of cervical and lumbar cord atrophy is similar.

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