Transverse Myelitis

Introduction

Transverse myelitis occurs when there is an inflammatory process which takes place in the spinal cord, and creates and develops itself further through the neurological processes of the body. The name itself literally means an inflammation across (hence the word transverse) the entire spinal column, and it denotes inflammation across the thickness of the spinal cord, which can be very severe in many patients.

Unfortunately, quite a few different patients who suffer from this condition typically do so at an entirely enormous cost to themselves, as this is a very serious and severe problem that can fully and completely harm people over a long period of time. Because transverse myelitis is a significantly serious and life-threatening disease in some cases, the prognosis can sometimes be relatively bleak for those who cannot handle the disease itself. 

Causes

The causes of transverse myelitis can vary greatly, of course, but one of the foremost issues with this disease and one of the most common causes is the onset of a severe spinal injury. For people who are paralyzed, or who otherwise have some type of significant spinal injury, transverse myelitis can do serious damage to them and their physical nature over a surprisingly short period of time.

Other causes can include the dissection of the aorta, which will then typically extend into one or more of the spinal arteries. This dissection can occur and then develop in that it creates major health problems for people who then have to deal with acute spinal harm and more.

Rarely, too, transverse myelitis can follow cat scratch disease in some patients, though this is typically not the case for many. It is occasionally connected to herpes, tuberculosis, leukemia, HIV, rabies, and other major diseases and disorders, as well, and many people who have major health problems at one time or another in their lives can experience transverse myelitis, in addition to whatever it is they are going through initially.

Symptoms

The symptoms of transverse myelitis begin when the limbs begin to note and experience weakness and numbness. With those problems related to the limbs themselves, then, the motor, sensory, and sphincter issues begin to take hold in a person’s body, and they have great trouble controlling and holding their movements in that manner. For some people, there is unfortunately almost a total paralysis, while in others, it is a more simple and straightforward paralysis issue that does not always seriously and significantly affect them in time.

The type and degree of the transverse myelitis issues in a person will vary from quite a few different things and sources; one thing is for sure, though – the quicker symptoms are caught and controlled, the more quickly these symptoms can be taken care of and the person can expect to live a solid life moving forward. If people are unable to catch these symptoms, it becomes difficult to succeed with a  prognosis around transverse myelitis, and the patient can suffer quite a bit regarding the condition itself, and their own quality of life.