Spinal cord compression medical therapy
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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D.  ; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Aditya Ganti M.B.B.S. 
All the patients with acute spinal cord compression must be admitted. The mainstay of treatment includes surgery along with adjuvant therapy. In cases of compression caused by metastasis the treatment is mostly palliative. Antibiotics are indicated in cases of compression caused by an epidural abscess.
All the patients with acute spinal cord compression must be admitted. The mainstay of treatment includes surgery along with adjuvant therapy. In cases of compression caused by metastasis the treatment is mostly palliative. Antibiotics are indicated in cases of compression caused by an epidural abscess. Adjuvant therapy includes:
- Preferred regimen (1): vancomycin 15-20 mg/kg IV q8-12h and metronidazole 500 mg IV q6h and cefotaxime 2 g IV q6h
Maintenance of fluid volume
- Goal is to maintain systolic blood pressure above 100 mmHg and an adequate urine output (0.5 mL/kg/hour) using fluid resuscitation, and vasopressors.
- Preferred regimen: volume resuscitation using fluid replacement with isotonic crystalloid solution to a maximum of 2 L is the initial treatment of choice.
- Failure to improve with IV fluids Dopamine 1-50 micrograms/kg/minute IV q8h can be administered.
- Preferred regimen: Methylprednisolone 30 mg/kg intravenously as a bolus given over 15 minutes followed by 5.4 mg/kg/hour intravenous infusion for 24 hours (if <3 hours since injury) or for 48 hours (if 3-8 hours since injury)
Prophylaxis for venous thromboembolism
- Preferred regimen: Enoxaparin 40 mg subcutaneously q24h
- Alternative regimen (1): Heparin 5000 units subcutaneously q8-12h
- IVC filter in patients with contraindications to anticoagulation.
Prevention of stress ulcers
- Preferred regimen (1): Omeprazole 40 mg orally q24h
- Preferred regimen (2): Cimetidine 300 mg orally/intravenously q6h
- Preferred regimen (3): Famotidine 40 mg orally q24h (or) 20 mg intravenously q12h
- Nutritional support
- Compression stockings or pneumatic intermittent compression
- Bladder catheterization
- Frequent repositioning of the patient for the prevention of pressure ulcers every 2 hours
- ↑ Johnston RA (1993). "The management of acute spinal cord compression". J. Neurol. Neurosurg. Psychiatr. 56 (10): 1046–54. PMC 1015230. PMID 8410001.
- ↑ Ropper, Alexander E.; Longo, Dan L.; Ropper, Allan H. (2017). "Acute Spinal Cord Compression". New England Journal of Medicine. 376 (14): 1358–1369. doi:10.1056/NEJMra1516539. ISSN 0028-4793.