Author: Sam Killian, M.D.
- Spinal cord injury without radiographic abnormality (SCIWORA) is a diagnosis defined as traumatic injury to spine with clinical sx of traumatic myelopathy (paraplegia, paresthesias, FND) without radiographic abnormalities.
- Term was established in 1970’s before MRI and accounted for about 15% of injuries at the time (mainly children). Today SCIWORA accounts for about 10% of spinal injuries.
- Belief is that injury causes subtle movement of the spinal cord from its natural position with resultant contusion or ischemia with subsequent deficits.
- Treatment involves prolonged immobilization (up to 12 weeks).
Walecki, J. (2014). Spinal Cord Injury Without Radiographic Abnormality (SCIWORA) – Clinical and Radiological Aspects. Polish Journal of Radiology,79, 461-464. doi:10.12659/pjr.890944