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Myelitis – what it is, prognosis, symptoms and treatment

General information

Myelitis is considered a fairly common ailment. At the initial stage, his symptoms are very deceptive.

Very sick progresses rapidly, symptoms similar to the manifestation of a cold or flu, almost always begins with a rise in temperature.

With complex professional treatment, the symptoms go away pretty quickly, but it can take months to recover the body after the illness. The disease affects patients of different ages, gender and race. Unfortunately, in the absence of adequate treatment or improper treatment, myelitis leads to a person’s disability.

The consequences of myelitis, which affect the work of the heart and lungs, the brain, can cause death.

The main causes of myelitis are:

  • viral infection (Coxsackie virus, influenza, ECHO, rabies virus, etc.);
  • toxins (mercury, lead, heavy chemicals);
  • mechanical closed or open spinal injuries, in which bacterial and viral infections penetrate into the brain);
  • bacterial infection (meningococcus, pale treponema, poliomyelitis, measles);
  • vaccination (as a result of an allergic reaction to the composition of the vaccine);
  • radiation exposure (during the treatment of cancer, which can affect the pharynx, larynx, esophagus);
  • weak immune system (against the background of inflammatory processes in the body).


Depending on the nature of the course, the disease has the following forms: acute, subacute and chronic.

Based on the mechanism of development, the disease is divided into groups:

  • primary (occurs as an independent illness);
  • secondary (occurs against the background of other diseases in the body).

If we consider the extent of the spread of pathology, myelitis is:

  • diffuse (covers the entire spinal cord);
  • limited (inflammation is in a specific focus);
  • multifocal (more than two foci of inflammation are diagnosed);
  • transverse myelitis (covers several segments at once).

By type of origin, myelitis is:

Based on the location of the lesion, myelitis is divided into cervical, lumbar, thoracic.


The disease is manifested by a weakening of the sensitivity of the arms and legs. Often manifested problems with the perception of parts of the body in the position with eyes closed, sometimes lack of sensitivity to pain.

There is a strong sensitivity of the skin to irritants; increased muscle tone in the legs and arms. Fecal and urinary incontinence is often diagnosed, and urinary and emptying is sometimes diagnosed.

The patient noted the impossibility of prolonged activity, increases body temperature, there is an increased separation of sweat. Against the background of weak immunity, a person is prone to colds and other diseases and there is a general weakness of the body.

In humans, paresthesias or “nonexistent sensations” are noted, among which are “goose bumps”, coldness, and the sensation of a whiff of wind. Regardless of the shape and type of myelitis, there is always a violation of sensitivity.

As a rule, disorders occur below the affected area.

There are several types of the disease:

  • the acute form is replaced by a stable state, the symptoms gradually subside;
  • acute transverse form, the symptoms of the disease persist throughout life, but health does not deteriorate;
  • progression of the disease, in which the spread of inflammation throughout the spinal cord.


To confirm or refute such a diagnosis is assigned:

  • electroneuromyography (ENMG);
  • complete blood count and antibodies;
  • computed tomography (CT) scan of the spinal cord;
  • lumbar puncture.
  • examination by a neurologist;
  • MRI of the spinal cord.

You may also need to consult a neurosurgeon. It will take several days to accurately diagnose the disease.

For the treatment of the disease will be assigned:

  • hospitalization;
  • reception of the means reducing a tone of various groups of muscles;
  • taking antivirals and antibacterial complexes;
  • antipyretic drugs, hormones;
  • placing a catheter into the bladder;
  • epicistoma, muscle relaxants and uroseptics;
  • antiseptic lavage of the bladder;
  • percussion and therapeutic massages;
  • Exercise therapy, physiotherapy (UFO);
  • taking vitamins of group B;
  • use of anticholinesterase drugs.
  • acupuncture etc.

In the process of treating myelitis, concomitant effects may occur, including pressure sores (as patients are recommended bed rest), contractures, fecal and urinary incontinence, a complete lack of sensitivity of the limbs, persistent neurological defect, etc. Special attention should be paid to skin care due to the high probability of diaper rash and pressure sores. The patient must be helped to roll over.

In the process of therapy will not harm the sun in a reasonable dosage.


For the prevention of the disease are needed:

  • vaccination against myelitis, as well as viruses that can trigger the disease (parotitis, measles, polio);
  • timely removal of foci of infection (treatment of sinusitis, otitis, caries, etc.)
  • adherence to a healthy lifestyle.

Without timely comprehensive treatment of the disease can turn into a disability. Patients undergo regular rehabilitation in sanatoriums and come back to life: there is a sensitivity in the limbs, lying patients begin to sit, move around with a cane, etc. Often, the myelitis of the upper cervical gland causes death.

With a favorable course of therapy, improvement may occur after two to three months, and full recovery after one or two years.

Patients with lower paresis of the extremities, sphincter weaknesses give III disability group. The second group is assigned to patients with gait disturbances (moderate inferior paraparesis) who cannot work under normal conditions. A person in need of constant care is assigned the first group of disabilities.

Myelitis treatment should be prescribed only by an experienced neurologist, who should monitor the course of therapy and rehabilitation of the patient. It may be necessary to consult related specialists: a neurosurgeon, a surgeon, a gynecologist, an endocrinologist, a cardiologist.

Migraine is a common disease that affects the nervous system, accompanied by bouts of powerful headaches. In most cases, pain syndrome is concentrated.

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