A tethered spinal cord occurs when the spinal cord is attached to tissue around the spine, most commonly at the base of the spine. As a result, the spinal cord can’t move freely within the spinal canal. This can cause the spinal cord to stretch out as the spine grows, leading to possible nerve damage, pain and other symptoms. In most cases, the condition becomes worse over time. The good news is that tethered spinal cord is a very treatable condition, especially when diagnosed and treated early. Surgery is the most common treatment to “untether” the spinal cord from the spinal tissue.