Cauda equina syndrome (CES) is a spinal emergency that can be challenging to identify from among the many patients presenting to EDs with low back and/or radicular leg pain. This article presents a practical guide to the assessment and early management of patients with suspected CES as well as an up-to-date review of the most important studies in this area that should inform clinical practice in the ED.
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Handling editor Ceri Battle
Twitter @TraumaDataDoc, @michangus, @AlexTNovak
Contributors DM conceived the need for this article and wrote the first draft. DM, IH, MA, AN, MH and JW helped develop the idea and made important critical revisions to the manuscript. All authors approved the final version.
Funding DM is supported by an NIHR Advanced Fellowship and the NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre.
Competing interests DM and AN are members of the EMJ editorial board. MH is chair of the National Suspected Cauda Equina Syndrome Pathway.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.