Department of Orthopaedics, Royal Derby Hospital, Derby, UK
Stroke is a common provisional diagnosis in patients presenting to the emergency department
(ED) with unilateral neurological deficit. Cervical epidural abscess (CEA) may also present clinically with a unilateral
To highlight the inherent problems with diagnosing cervical epidural abscess and possible consequences of
delay in diagnosis.
We would like to highlight two cases provisionally diagnosed as stroke. Both cases turned out to be cervical
epidural abscesses. The delay in diagnosis and treatment led to suboptimal outcome in both cases.
Cases with suspected stroke who deteriorate while under treatment or whose diagnosis is doubtful should have
MRI whole spine in order to avoid potential complications.
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* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Orthopaedics,
Royal Derby Hospital, Derby, UK; Tel: 0044 7877461862;