Segmental thoracic lipomatosis of nerve with nerve territory overgrowth

Mark A Mahan, Kimberly K Amrami, B Matthew Howe, Robert J Spinner
Journal of Neurosurgery 2014, 120 (5): 1118-24
Lipomatosis of nerve (LN), or fibrolipomatous hamartoma, is a rare condition of fibrofatty enlargement of the peripheral nerves. It is associated with bony and soft tissue overgrowth in approximately one-third to two-thirds of cases. It most commonly affects the median nerve at the carpal tunnel or digital nerves in the hands and feet. The authors describe a patient with previously diagnosed hemihypertrophy of the trunk who had a history of large thoracic lipomas resected during infancy, a thoracic hump due to adipose proliferation within the thoracic paraspinal musculature, and scoliotic deformity. She had fatty infiltration in the thoracic spinal nerves on MRI, identical to findings pathognomonic of LN at better-known sites. Enlargement of the transverse processes at those levels and thickened ribs were also found. This case appears to be directly analogous to other instances of LN with overgrowth, except that this case involved axial nerves rather than the typical appendicular nerves.

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