Diseases of the spinal cord

The first thing to assess is whether symptoms originating from the spinal cord are caused by a trauma or a disease. Symptoms caused by a trauma appear acutely and the trauma is usually known, whereas symptoms caused by a disease develop more slowly.Conditions requiring emergency care should be distinguished from more chronic diseases of the spinal cord.Some spinal cord diseases are local, others are disseminated. If you suspect a spinal cord disease, try to assess whether it really is an upper motor neurone lesion and what is the level of the possible lesion. In diffuse spinal cord diseases there is no sensory level, but in spinal cord compression it can often be found.