Neurosurgical aspects of dialysis-related spinal amyloidosis: Report of three cases and a review of the literature

M. Dalolio, F. Lucarella, P. Rampini, G. P. Bulfamante, S. Aldea, P. Graveleau, S. Gaillard, P. Scarone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and purpose: Osteoarticular manifestations of beta-2 microglobulin amyloidosis are often diagnosed in long-term dialyzed patients. However, spinal involvement is rare (10-25% of patients), and generally not associated with neurological deterioration. Compression of the spinal cord or roots is extremely rare, and probably under-recognized. Methods: The authors describe three cases of spinal stenosis presenting with neurological signs in long-term dialyzed patients, prospectively collected over 2 years in two different institutions and treated by surgical decompression. In all three cases, the main cause of neural compression was amyloid deposition in the spine, either extradurally in the ligamentum flavum or intradurally. Results: All patients improved after surgery and did not present any postoperative complications. However, two out of three patients with amyloid in the cervical spine required surgical revision to obtain a satisfactory decompression of the spinal cord. Discussion: The authors discuss spinal amyloidosis which is a well-known complication of long-term dialysis. However, neurological complications such as spinal cord or radicular symptoms have been rarely reported and, when present in dialyzed patients, are symptoms that are often attributed to other causes. To our knowledge, this is the first case series that demonstrates the relationship between neurological deterioration and amyloid depositions in the spinal canal that occur in long-term dialyzed patients. The prevalence of spinal stenosis related to the presence of amyloid in this specific subgroup of patients is probably underestimated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)314-319
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Amyloid
  • Amyloidosis
  • Beta-2-microglobulin
  • Spinal stenosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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