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Topic: Cauda Equina Syndrome
Subject: Medicine
A 65-year-old male presents with a 1-month history of problems passing urine. He says that his bladder will feel full when he needs to urinate, but the urine stream is weak and his bladder does not feel as if it has emptied completely. The symptoms have become increasingly severe over the past week. Other symptoms include upper respiratory congestion for 3 days which he has treated with an over-thecounter decongestant with some relief, constipation with no passage of stool in the past 9 days, and increasing low back pain incompletely relieved with ibuprofen, with associated weakness in both legs. Examination shows a healthy-appearing male who is moderately overweight. He is afebrile and vital signs are normal. There is no abdominal tenderness and no masses are detected. A rectal examination reveals a large amount of hard stool in the rectum; a markedly enlarged (4+), boggy, tender prostate gland; laxity of the anal sphincter; and numbness in the perianal area. Urinalysis shows trace protein and 10-20 WBCs/hpf. Ultrasonography shows a post-void residual volume of 250 mL (normal for age <100).
Which one of the following must be done urgently in this patient?

A. Foley catheterization

B. Hospitalization for intravenous antibiotics

C. Digital disimpaction of the rectum, and Fleet enemas until clear

D. MRI of the lumbosacral spine

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