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Diastematomyelia (occasionally diastomyelia) is a congenital disorder in which a part of the spinal cord is split, usually at the level of the upper lumbar vertebra.

Diastematomyelia is a rare congenital anomaly that results in the “splitting” of the spinal cord in a longitudinal (sagittal) direction. Females are affected much more commonly than males. This condition occurs in the presence of an osseous (bone), cartilaginous or fibrous septum in the central portion of the spinal canal which then produces a complete or incomplete sagittal division of the spinal cord into two hemicords. When the split does not reunite distally to the spur, the condition is referred to as a Diplomyelia, or true duplication of the spinal cord.


Pang et al. classified spinal cord duplication anomalies into types I and II. The first is characterized by two hemicords, each contained within its own dural sac, and separated by an osteocartillaginous septum. Type II is defined by two hemicords in the same dural sac, separated by a fibrous septum 1) 2).

Pang D, Dias MS, Ahab-Barmada M. Split cord malformation: Part I. A unified theory of embryogenesis for double spinal cord malformations. Neurosurgery 1992;31:451-480.
Pang D, Dias MS, Ahab-Barmada M. Split cord malformation. Part II: Clinical syndrome. Neurosurgery 1992;31:481-500.
diastematomyelia.txt · Last modified: 2016/12/28 10:18 (external edit)