Editor-in-Chief: Alaa Abd-Elsayed, MD, PhD
BACKGROUND: Incidental dural tear (durotomy) is a known complication of many forms of spinal instrumentation. The majority of durotomy cases are due to a known traumatic force, such as an intentional durotomy during neuraxial anesthesia, or an unintentional tear during lumbar decompression surgery. However, spontaneous dural tears have occasionally been reported.
CASE REPORT: We report a case of a 16-year-old woman with postural headaches who was found to have a spontaneous thoracic dural tear on magnetic resonance imaging. She underwent a successful fluoroscopic-guided epidural blood patch with resolution of symptoms.
CONCLUSION: This case highlights the importance of considering spontaneous dural tears as a possible cause of postural headaches.
KEY WORDS: Spontaneous dural tear, traumatic dural tear, idiopathic dural tear, durotomy, post-dural postural headache, epidural blood patch, headache, CSF leak, case report