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Case Reports in Medicine
Volume 2010, Article ID 328103, 4 pages
Case Report

Pneumocephalus Associated with Cerebrospinal Fluid Fistula as a Complication of Spinal Surgery: A Case Report

1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe University, 7-5-2 Kusunoki-cho, Chou-ku, Kobe 650-0017, Japan
2Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Rokko Hospital, Kobe 657-0022, Japan

Received 21 December 2009; Revised 15 April 2010; Accepted 23 April 2010

Academic Editor: Timothy C. Ryken

Copyright © 2010 Ken Sasaki et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Pneumocephalus is a well-known condition following head trauma, but is rare as an injury or as a result of surgery of the spine. We present a 76-year-old patient with a rare case of pneumocephalus associated with a cerebrospinal fluid fistula as a complication of surgical treatment for cervical myelopathy. Although cerebrospinal fluid leakage was noted and the injured dura was carefully sutured at operation, tension pneumocephalus occurred. The resultant pneumocephalus was diagnosed based on neurogenic symptoms including sudden convulsion, head radiograph, and computed tomography scan. The benign course of the pneumocephalus postdiagnosis did not require secondary operation.