Other Names for this Disease
- Perineural cysts
- Sacral neural cysts
- Sacral perineural cysts
- Sacral Tarlov cysts
- Tarlov cyst
Tarlov cysts are fluid-filled sacs that most often affect nerve roots in the sacrum, the group of bones at the base of the spine. These cysts can compress nerve roots, causing lower back pain, sciatica (shock-like or burning pain in the lower back, buttocks, and down one leg to below the knee), urinary incontinence, headaches, sexual dysfunction, constipation, and some loss of feeling or control of movement in the leg and/or foot. Pressure on the nerves next to the cysts can also cause pain and deterioration of the surrounding bone. Tarlov cysts may become symptomatic following shock, trauma, or exertion that causes the buildup of cerebrospinal fluid. Women are at much higher risk of developing these cysts than are men.
Last updated: 11/14/2011
- NINDS Tarlov Cysts Information Page. National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). 2009; http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/tarlov_cysts/tarlov_cysts.htm. Accessed 11/14/2011.
- The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) collects and disseminates research information related to neurological disorders. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
- The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) is a federation of more than 130 nonprofit voluntary health organizations serving people with rare disorders. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
- The Tarlov Cyst Disease Foundation has an information page on this topic. The Tarlov Cyst Disease Foundation is a volunteer-based, 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation dedicated to the research, improved diagnosis, advocacy for patients, and development of successful treatments and outcomes for symptomatic Tarlov cysts. Click on the link above to view the information page.