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Table 3 Cross-sectional patterns of spinal cord involvement in various causes of non-compressive myelopathy

From: Radiological approach to non-compressive myelopathies

Pattern of involvement

Disease entity


Central cord

NMOSD, ADEM, Systemic inflammatory disease (SLE and Sjogren’s syndrome), Idiopathic transverse myelitis, Infectious (viral, bacterial, fungal), Radiation

Peripheral, wedge-shaped, or oval

Multiple sclerosis

Central gray matter

Infarction, d AVF, AVM, compressive myelopathy

Dorsal column

Vitamin B12 and copper deficiency, Zinc and Nitrous oxide toxicity, Autoimmune

Anterior horn

Infarction (watershed), Infections (polio, enterovirus), Post-vaccination

  1. NMOSD neuromyelitis optica spectrum disease, ADEM acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, SLE systemic lupus erythematosus, d AVF/AVM dural arteriovenous fistula/malformation