Spinal cord sarcoidosis: A new finding at MR imaging with Gd-DTPA enhancement

G. M. Nesbit, G. M. Miller, H. L. Baker, M. J. Ebersold, B. W. Scheithauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


Three patients with histologically confirmed sarcoidosis with spinal cord involvement were examined with high-field-strength magnetic resonance imaging (1.5 T) before and after the administration of gadolinium diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid. In addition to intramedullary expansion, areas of patchy, multifocal, parenchymal enhancement and areas of linear peripheral enhancement were seen in all three patients; these findings have not been previously reported and are unusual for other more common spinal cord lesions. This observation led to a correct diagnosis and a limitation of the extent of biopsy in two of the cases. Unfortunately, this enhancement pattern is not specific for sarcoidosis, as the authors have observed similar findings in two cases of biopsy-proved myelitis and multiple sclerosis. The peripheral enhancement is thought to be located in the leptomeninges due to leptomeningeal involvement, which was proved histologically in one case. This pattern of involvement, while not specific, is certainly consistent with and, in the appropriate clinical setting, highly suggestive of sarcoidosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)839-843
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes


  • Gadolinium
  • Magnetic resonance (MR), contrast media
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Spinal cord, MR studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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