What is cauda equina syndrome? The cauda equina is at the end of the spinal cord. Cauda equina syndrome occurs when this bundle of nerves is compressed. Fortunately, cauda equina syndrome usually only affects LESS THAN 1% of low back pain sufferers. Cauda equina syndrome is associated with bowel and bladder problems like loss of control of bowel and bladder functions or loss of feeling to the lower pelvic area and legs. These symptoms need more immediate medical attention and possible surgery. Cauda equina syndrome is sometimes caused by a herniated disc that ruptures into the spinal canal and compresses the cauda equina. « View All FAQs"This information and website content is not intended to diagnose, guarantee results, or recommend specific treatment or activity. It is designed to educate and inform only. Please consult your physician for a thorough examination leading to a diagnosis and well-planned treatment strategy. See more details on the DISCLAIMER page. Content is reviewed by Dr. James M. Cox I."